Biggar picked as Probables' fly-half
May 27, 2014
Dan Biggar ... in the hot seat © PA Photos
As expected, Wales' trial match on Friday will go ahead in Swansea without any players at English clubs, although those based in France will be available.
Gavin Henson, Paul James, Owen Williams and Rhys Gill are unable to take part even though their club seasons are over. A spokesperson for Premier Rugby Limited said that because the game is not a Test match they do not have to release non-England players. It is possible that if clubs had agreed then they would have faced a fine.
The main story comes with the selection of Ospreys' Dan Biggar as fly-half for the Probables with Perpignan's James Hook filling the same role for the Possibles.
Scarlets wing Jordan Williams is the only uncapped player picked for the Probables starting XV as George North is taking part in the Premiership final for Northampton.
"Friday is a huge opportunity for players and a chance for us to see them go up against each other for the Wales jersey," said Rob Howley, who coaches the Probables. "It's something we haven't been able to do for the last decade, but it will be a big night for the players, we want to see them in a pressured environment and that's what we will get on Friday."
Possibles coach Robin McBryde said: "It's been great to have the squad together, we only have a short time to prepare, but we are up for the challenge and excited by it. We have always said that the door is always open in international rugby and this is an opportunity that doesn't come round very often and the players know it's their chance to impress on a big public stage in front of all the coaches."
Probables: Liam Williams (Scarlets); Alex Cuthbert (Cardiff Blues), Jonathan Davies (Scarlets), Jamie Roberts (Racing Metro), Jordan Williams (Scarlets); Dan Biggar (Ospreys), Mike Phillips (Racing Metro); Gethin Jenkins (Cardiff Blues), Ken Owens (Scarlets), Adam Jones (Ospreys), Alun Wyn Jones (Capt) (Ospreys), Luke Charteris (Perpignan), Josh Turnbull (Scarlets), Aaron Shingler (Scarlets), Taulupe Faletau (Newport Gwent Dragons).
Replacements: Scott Baldwin (Ospreys), Aaron Jarvis (Ospreys), Samson Lee (Scarlets), Lewis Evans (Newport Gwent Dragons), Josh Navidi (Cardiff Blues), Rhodri Williams (Scarlets), Sam Davies (Ospreys), Dafydd Hewitt (Cardiff Blues).
Possibles: Dan Fish (Cardiff Blues); Kristian Phillips (Scarlets), Cory Allen (Cardiff Blues), Steven Shingler (Scarlets), Harry Robinson (Cardiff Blues); James Hook (Perpignan), Gareth Davies (Scarlets); Rob Evans (Scarlets), Matthew Rees (Capt) (Cardiff Blues), Rhodri Jones (Scarlets), Jake Ball (Scarlets), Ian Evans (Ospreys), Andrew Coombs (Newport Gwent Dragons), Ellis Jenkins (Cardiff Blues), Dan Baker (Ospreys).
Replacements: Kristian Dacey (Cardiff Blues), Owen Evans (Newport Gwent Dragons), Scott Andrews (Cardiff Blues), Macauley Cook (Cardiff Blues), James Davies (Scarlets), Lloyd Williams (Cardiff Blues), Matthew Morgan (Ospreys), Jonathan Spratt (Ospreys).
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