Ospreys quartet to face Italy

Aled Davies will make his first Six Nations start this weekend after being named as one of four Ospreys in the Wales starting line-up to play Italy in Rome on Saturday (4.45pm KO).

Adam Beard is one of just five players to retain their place from the opening weekend win over France, while Owen Watkin and Nicky Smith also come in, Smith returning to action for the first time since injuring his ankle in a Challenge Cup tie against Stade Francais at the Liberty Stadium in December.

Alun Wyn Jones is the fifth Osprey in the matchday 23, taking a seat on the bench among the replacements

Jonathan Davies will captain Wales for the first as he leads his country at Stadio Olimpico, on his 70th cap, and becomes Wales’ 137th captain.

"We have made a number of changes this weekend but have picked what we think is a very exciting team that still has huge experience throughout it," said Wales head coach Warren Gatland.

"We have made a similar number of changes to what we did last year, but it is all about opportunity for these players. 

"We have had a squad of 31 training together, replicating the Rugby World Cup and it is important they get game-time. 

"It is a great opportunity for Jon (Davies) as captain.  He has a huge amount of experience, is a great leader and it is a great honour for him to lead his country.

"Italy will be hurting after last weekend but they are a different proposition in Rome. They are an experienced team themselves and they will be looking to put things right on the pitch after their opening defeat."


WALES TEAM TO PLAY ITALY (Saturday February 9 KO 16.45 GMT – Live ITV & S4C)

15. Liam Williams (52 Caps)

14. Jonah Holmes (1 Cap)

13. Jonathan Davies (69 Caps) (Capt)

12. Owen Watkin (9 Caps)

11. Josh Adams (7 Caps)

10. Dan Biggar (66 Caps)

9. Aled Davies (12 Caps)

1. Nicky Smith (24 Caps)

2. Elliot Dee (14 Caps)

3. Samson Lee (39 Caps)

4. Jake Ball (29 Caps)

5. Adam Beard (9 Caps)

6. Aaron Wainwright (4 Caps)

7. Thomas Young (2 Caps)

8. Josh Navidi (12 Caps)



16. Ryan Elias (6 Caps)

17. Wyn Jones (11 Caps)

18. Dillon Lewis (8 Caps)

19 Alun Wyn Jones (121 Caps)

20. Ross Moriarty (27 Caps)

21. Gareth Davies (37 Caps)

22. Gareth Anscombe (22 Caps)

23. Hallam Amos (18 Caps)