Wales U18 Head Coach Geraint Lewis has named his team for their first international of the season.
Wales U18 face France U18 at Cross Keys on Friday evening at 19.15. They then follow that up with a game against England U18 as they build towards the inaugural 5 Nations tournament between England, Ireland, Italy, Scotland, and Wales, which will be held in Wales over Easter.
The side is skippered by Cowbridge Comprehensive number 8 Aled Ward, and features a number of Exiles, including Millfield’s Rhys Davies in the second row and Solihull’s Will Talbot at full back.
Also featuring in the side is Ystalyfera inside centre Kieran Williams, who played for Wales U20 in their victory over France U20 last week.
France U18 meanwhile also include some familiar names, full back Romain Ntamack, son of Emile and prop Daniel Brennan, son of former Ireland lock Trevor.
Speaking ahead of the game, Lewis said:
“We are looking forward to playing France who are always powerful at age grade level and have such a rich rugby heritage. With a clean sweep against France last weekend from the seniors, Under 20s and Women, we hope to carry on in the same vein by kicking off our international season with a victory but we are under no illusions that it will be an easy task.”
“We performed well in beating Leicester Academy last month, and some of our players have had time with the Wales Under 20 squad, Kieran Williams coming on against France last weekend, so they will have benefitted from that.”
Wales U18 XV v France
15 Will Talbot Davies (Dragons/Solihull); 14 Pat Lewis (Dragon/Lewis), 13 Owen Lane (Blues/Cowbridge), 12 Kieran Williams (Ospreys/Ystalyfera), 11 Ryan Conbeer (Scarlets/Sir Gar); 10 Phil Jones (Ospreys/Gowerton), 9 Efan Jones (Wrexham/Rydal Penrhos); 1 Rhys Carre (Blue/Cowbridge), 2 Corrie Tarent (Blues/Cymoedd), 3 Christian Coleman (Dragons/Garndiffaith), 4 Rhys Davies (Bath/Millfield), 5 James Ratti (Ospreys/Gower), 6 Lloyd Pike (Scarlets/Sir Gar), 7 Will Jones (Ospreys/Gower), 8 Aled Ward (captain Blues/Cowbridge).
Replacements: 16 Jordan Liney (Ospreys/Hartpury), 17 Eddie Drake (Blues/Cowbridge), 18 Josh Reynolds (Dragons/Newport High), 19 Max Williams (Dragons/Newport High), 20 Joe Thomas (Dragons/Gwent), 21 Owain Leonard (Dragons/Gwynlliw), 22 Ben Jones (Blues/Cymoedd), 23 Corey Baldwin (Scarlets/Llandovery College).