Planet Rugby

Gatland brings in Lions pair

05th March 2014 11:22

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Jonathan Davies Ireland

Back in: Jonathan Davies

Wales boss Warren Gatland has named Jonathan Davies and Alun Wyn Jones in his starting line-up to face England on Sunday.

Davies returns from injury to reunite Wales' most capped centre pairing as he lines up alongside Jamie Roberts.

The only change in pack, from the victory against France, sees Jones return in the second-row after missing the Millennium Stadium clash with a foot infection. He partners Luke Charteris behind a front-row of Gethin Jenkins, Richard Hibbard and Adam Jones, with Scarlets lock Jake Ball moving to the bench. The back-row remains unchanged with captain Sam Warburton featuring alongside Dan Lydiate and Taulupe Faletau.

Rhys Webb and Rhys Priestland continue their partnership in the half-backs.

There is one positional change in the backline with George North returning to the wing from centre, in place of Scarlets back Liam Williams who provides cover from the bench. North lines up alongside Cardiff Blues pair Alex Cuthbert and Leigh Halfpenny in the back three.

"It's great to have both Jon and Alun Wyn back and available and they come into a very experienced side," said Gatland.

"Jon came through the match well at the weekend and he is ready to go."

"We were happy with the response and performance against France but we know we will have to raise it another level on Sunday."

"We are really looking forward to going up to Twickenham, England have performed well so far and it's set up to be a great game with all to play for."

On the bench Ken Owens, Rhodri Jones and Paul James are named as the front row replacements and are joined by Ball and Ospreys flanker Justin Tipuric to complete the forward cover and Mike Phillips, Dan Biggar and Williams provide cover for the backs.

Wales: 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 Alex Cuthbert, 13 Jon Davies, 12 Jamie Roberts, 11 George North, 10 Rhys Priestland, 9 Rhys Webb, 8 Taulupe Faletau, 7 Sam Warburton (c), 6 Dan Lydiate, 5 Luke Charteris, 4 Alun Wyn Jones, 3 Adam Jones, 2 Richard Hibbard, 1 Gethin Jenkins
Replacements: 16 Ken Owens, 17 Paul James, 18 Rhodri Jones, 19 Jake Ball, 20 Justin Tipuric, 21 Mike Phillips, 22 Dan Biggar, 23 Liam Williams

Date: Sunday 9th March
Venue: Twickenham
Kick-off: 1500 (local and GMT)
Referee: Romain Poite (Fra)
Assistant referees: Steve Walsh (Aus), Lourens van der Merwe (RSA)
TMO: Simon McDowell (Ire)

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