Six Nations leaders Wales change two for Italy
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Wales head coach Wayne Pivac has made two changes for Saturday’s Six Nations fixture against Italy in Rome.
Gareth Davies takes over from his injured Scarlets colleague Kieran Hardy, while lock Cory Hill starts instead of Adam Beard.
Victory over the Azzurri would tighten Wales’ grip on the Six Nations title race following their Triple Crown-clinching success against England and also leave them one win away from achieving a second Grand Slam in three seasons.
Hardy suffered a hamstring injury during the England game after earlier scoring a try in the 40-24 triumph.
Hill impressed with a scoring contribution after being used as a replacement, and he now partners captain Alun Wyn Jones.
Changes on the bench include places for Cardiff Blues prop Rhys Carre and Scarlets lock Jake Ball, who will win his 50th cap if he is brought on at the Stadio Olimpico.
Carre replaces Rhodri Jones, who has been released from the Wales squad after suffering a calf muscle injury in training
Wales: 15 Liam Williams, 14 Louis Rees-Zammit, 13 George North, 12 Jonathan Davies, 11 Josh Adams, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Gareth Davies, 8 Taulupe Faletau, 7 Justin Tipuric, 6 Josh Navidi, 5 Alun Wyn Jones (captain), 4 Cory Hill, 3 Tomas Francis, 2 Ken Owens, 1 Wyn Jones.
Replacements: 16 Elliot Dee, 17 Rhys Carre, 18 Leon Brown, 19 Jake Ball, 20 Aaron Wainwright, 21 Lloyd Williams, 22 Callum Sheedy, 23 Uilisi Halaholo.
Date: Saturday, March 13
Venue: Stadio Olimpico, Rome
Kick-off: 15.15 (14.15 GMT)
Referee: Wayne Barnes (England)
Assistant Referees: Pascal Gauzere (France), Christophe Ridley (England)
TMO: Tom Foley (England)