Wales head coach Gareth Williams has named four young Ospreys in his starting XV to play Argentina in the opening round of the U20 World Rugby Championship on Tuesday (KO 5pm BST).
The team is led by hooker Dewi Lake, while the half back pairing of Harri Morgan and Cai Evans are joined in the back line by centre, Tiaan Thomas-Wheeler.
The starting XV is a settled combination with Scarlets second row Morgan Jones the only player who didn’t feature in this season’s U20 Six Nations championship, and that was due to injury.
Wales find themselves in a demanding pool with defending champions France and Fiji arriving in Argentina with big expectations and Williams is fully aware playing the Pumitas on their home patch will be no easy task.
In last year’s championship, Argentina defeated Wales comfortably in the 5–8th place play-offs to eventually end the tournament in sixth place, one spot ahead of Wales.
There are four survivors from that defeat in the starting line-up with captain Dewi Lake, winger Ryan Conbeer, centre Tiaan Thomas-Wheeler and fly-half Cai Evans all aiming for a better result this time round, while replacements Rhys Davies and midfielder Max Llewellyn were also on the wrong end of the result in Narbonne.
“We have come to Argentina wanting to be as successful as possible, but are very aware that wins at international level do not just happen. Especially against a quality team like Argentina in their opening match of a home World Cup,” said Williams.
“The challenge for us is to be at our best from a tactical, technical, physical, and mental point of view to achieve those results. “If we can harness those areas in our preparation, we’ll hopefully fall the right side of the scoreline come the end of 80 minutes.”
U20 World Rugby Championship
June 4: Wales U20s v Argentina U20s (KO 5pm BST, Live on S4C.cymru/clic & facebook.com/s4cchwaraeon)
The Racecourse Stadium, Rosario
15 Ioan Davies (Cardiff Blues)
14 Rio Dyer (Dragons)
13 Aneurin Owen (Dragons)
12 Tiaan Thomas-Wheeler (Ospreys)
11 Ryan Conbeer (Scarlets)
10 Cai Evans (Ospreys)
9 Harri Morgan (Ospreys);
1 Kemsley Mathias (Scarlets)
2 Dewi Lake (Ospreys – Capt)
3 Ben Warren (Cardiff Blues)
4 Morgan Jones (Scarlets)
5 Jac Price (Scarlets)
6 Lennon Greggains (Dragons)
7 Tommy Reffell (Leicester Tigers)
8 Jac Morgan (Aberavon/Scarlets)
Will Griffiths (Dragons), Garin Lloyd (Ospreys) , Rhys Davies (Ospreys) , Tom Devine (Dragons), Nick English (Bristol Bears) , Teddy Williams (Cardiff Blues), Ed Scragg (Dragons), Iestyn Rees (Scarlets), Dafydd Buckland (Dragons) ,Max Llewellyn (Cardiff Blues) , Deon Smith (Dragons), Tomi Lewis (Scarlets)