Wales pick Adams ahead of Williams for Australia


Autumn International: Wales v Australia
Venue: Principality Stadium, Cardiff Date: Saturday, 10 November Kick-off: 17:20 GMT
Coverage: Live on BBC Two, S4C, BBC Radio Wales, Radio Cymru, the BBC Sport website and app.

Wales have picked Worcester wing Josh Adams ahead of British and Irish Lions star Liam Williams for Saturday’s Test against Australia.

Adams replaces Luke Morgan as one of three changes from the team that beat Scotland, while Williams is joined on the bench by fly-half Dan Biggar as Gareth Anscombe stays at 10.

Tight-head prop Tomas Francis is recalled in place of Dillon Lewis.

The third change sees Adam Beard replace Cory Hill in the second row.

Williams, Adams, Francis and Biggar were all unavailable last weekend against Scotland because they play for English clubs, and the match fell outside World Rugby’s international window.

Saracens back Williams had been tipped to slot into the back three alongside Leigh Halfpenny and George North.

  • Australia make four changes for Wales

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Anscombe has been given another chance at fly-half despite the availability of Northampton’s Biggar with Rhys Patchell also having passed concussion protocol tests.

With Samson Lee still ruled out with a hamstring injury, Exeter tight-head Francis starts ahead of Lewis who is named among the replacements.

The other change in the forwards sees Beard form an all-Ospreys second-row partnership with Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones.

Forwards coach Robin McBryde singled out Beard for praise on Monday following his replacement performance against Scotland. He edges out Dragons skipper Hill who was Wales’ summer tour co-captain with Cardiff Blues flanker Ellis Jenkins, who has himself recovered from a shoulder injury.

Jenkins is on the bench after back-row trio Dan Lydiate, Justin Tipuric and Ross Moriarty impressed last weekend.

It’s not about creating hype – Gatland

Head coach Warren Gatland said building a squad for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan influenced his thinking on selection.

“There is some continuity from last week and we wanted to reward the boys that toured in the summer,” he said.

Gareth Anscombe and Tomas Francis<!–

“Josh had a particularly good tour and we wanted to give him another opportunity.

“We know the capabilities of Liam Williams and Josh getting an opportunity against a quality side like Australia gives us another chance to look at him.

“Gareth has retained the 10 jersey, It wasn’t about being a close call. We know what a quality player Dan (Biggar) is, we know what his strengths are.

“Again, it was sending a message to Gareth that we didn’t want to just pick you for one game and then put you on the bench.

“It is not about creating a press hype about a big decision about leaving Dan Biggar out, it is about us thinking about what is important for the team now and building depth in the squad and thinking about the next eight to 10 months.”

Wales: Leigh Halfpenny; George North, Jonathan Davies, Hadleigh Parkes, Josh Adams; Gareth Anscombe, Gareth Davies; Nicky Smith, Ken Owens, Tomas Francis, Adam Beard, Alun Wyn Jones, Dan Lydiate, Justin Tipuric, Ross Moriarty

Replacements: Elliot Dee, Rob Evans, Dillon Lewis, Cory Hill, Ellis Jenkins, Tomos Williams, Dan Biggar, Liam Williams

Australia: Dane Haylett-Petty; Israel Folau, Samu Kerevi, Kurtley Beale, Sefa Naivalu; Bernard Foley, Will Genia; Scott Sio, Tolu Latu, Allan Alaalatoa, Izack Rodda, Adam Coleman, Jack Dempsey, Michael Hooper (capt), David Pocock

Replacements: Tatafu Polota-Nau, Sekope Kepu, Taniela Tupou, Rob Simmons, Ned Hanigan, Nick Phipps, Matt To’omua, Jack Maddocks.

Referee: Ben O’Keeffe (New Zealand)

Assistant referees: Romain Poite (France), Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)

TMO: Simon McDowell (Ireland)

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