Rugby-Halfpenny milestone as Wales ring changes for Canada test


  • Rugby
  • Tuesday, 29 Jun 2021

FILE PHOTO: Rugby Union - Six Nations Championship - Scotland v Wales - Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland, Britain - February 13, 2021 Wales' Leigh Halfpenny during the warm up before the match REUTERS/Russell Cheyne

(Reuters) - Fullback Leigh Halfpenny will make his 100th test appearance when Wales host Canada at the Principality Stadium on Saturday and there could be as many as five debuts for the home side in the friendly international.

Coach Wayne Pivac has been forced to make a number of changes from the side that competed in the Six Nations through injury, and with 10 players on duty for the British and Irish Lions in South Africa.

Halfpenny will win a 96th cap for his country to go with four for the Lions, and along with centre and captain Jonathan Davies is the only player in the team with over 50 international appearances.

"It is a thoroughly deserved milestone for Leigh and it is made all the sweeter by the fact that his family and so many of our supporters are able to be in attendance," Pivac said in a Welsh Rugby news release on Tuesday.

Five players could make their Wales debuts.

Winger Tom Rogers and lock Ben Carter both start, while prop Gareth Thomas, back row Taine Basham and centre Ben Thomas are among the replacements.

"This summer is an important block as we build towards Rugby World Cup 2023, and it is great to give five uncapped players opportunities," Pivac said.

"They have all impressed us in training, deserve a chance and we are looking forward to seeing them step up to the Test arena."

Wales team:

1 Nicky Smith (Ospreys) (39 caps)

2 Elliot Dee (Dragons) (37 caps)

3 Dillon Lewis (Cardiff Rugby) (28 caps)

4 Ben Carter (Dragons) (Uncapped)*

5 Will Rowlands (Dragons) (7 caps)

6 Ross Moriarty (Dragons) (45 caps)

7 James Botham (Cardiff Rugby) (6 caps)

8 Aaron Wainwright (Dragons) (29 caps)

9 Tomos Williams (Cardiff Rugby) (22 caps)

10 Callum Sheedy (Bristol Bears) (9 caps)

11 Tom Rogers (Scarlets) (Uncapped)*

12 Jonathan Davies (CAPT) (Scarlets) (88 caps)

13 Uilisi Halaholo (Cardiff Rugby) (4 caps)

14 Jonah Holmes (Dragons) (5 caps)

15 Leigh Halfpenny (Scarlets) (95 caps)

Replacements

16 Ryan Elias (Scarlets) (17 caps)

17 Gareth Thomas (Ospreys) (Uncapped)*

18 Leon Brown (Dragons) (17 caps)

19 Josh Turnbull (Cardiff Rugby) (10 caps)

20 Taine Basham (Dragons) (Uncapped)*

21 Kieran Hardy (Scarlets) (4 caps)

22 Ben Thomas (Cardiff Rugby) (Uncapped)*

23 Nick Tompkins (Saracens) (10 caps)

(Reporting by Nick Said, editing by Ed Osmond)

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