INTERIM WALES head coach Rob Howley has picked just one uncapped player in his 35-man squad for the upcoming November Internationals.
Ospreys prop Aaron Jarvis is the only new player in a squad that sees centre Jamie Roberts return after missing the summer tour of Australia due to injury. Sam Warburton remains as captain for the four Tests against Argentina, Samoa, New Zealand and Australia. Rob McCusker and Tavis Knoyle are both recalled from the Scarlets, whilst Dan Biggar is another returning to the squad after impressing against Leicester Tigers yesterday in the Heineken Cup.
Wales are without flanker Dan Lydiate (ankle) and prop Craig Mitchell (arm) due to injury, whilst there is no place in the squad for London Welsh fly-half Gavin Henson or Ospreys centre Andrew Bishop.
Howley said: “We are really pleased with the strength and depth of the squad, with some pleasing individual performances over the last three or four weeks.
“But we all understand and realise the skill, physicality and intensity will go up over the next five weeks. This is one of the reasons we are going back to our training camp in Poland to sharpen minds and bodies.”
“Argentina are first up, and after the experience they have gained in the Rugby Championship they will be a challenging and tough opponent, but this is a challenge we will look forward to.
“We know how important momentum is going into any series, and the bigger picture is the Rugby World Cup draw at the beginning of December, and how we perform against the Pumas, Samoa, the All Blacks and the Wallabies will have a direct effect on our seeding in that draw.”
Backs: Leigh Halfpenny (Cardiff Blues), Liam Williams (Scarlets), Alex Cuthbert (Cardiff Blues), George North (Scarlets), Harry Robinson (Cardiff Blues), Ashley Beck (Ospreys), Jonathan Davies (Scarlets), Jamie Roberts (Cardiff Blues), Scott Williams (Scarlets), Dan Biggar (Ospreys), James Hook (Perpignan), Rhys Priestland (Scarlets), Tavis Knoyle (Scarlets), Mike Phillips (Bayonne), Lloyd Williams (Cardiff Blues).
Forwards: Scott Andrews (Cardiff Blues), Ryan Bevington (Ospreys), Paul James (Bath), Aaron Jarvis (Ospreys), Gethin Jenkins (Toulon), Adam Jones (Ospreys), Richard Hibbard (Ospreys), Ken Owens (Scarlets), Matthew Rees (Scarlets), Bradley Davies (Cardiff Blues), Luke Charteris (Perpignan), Ian Evans (Ospreys), Alun-Wyn Jones (Ospreys), Toby Faletau (Dragons), Ryan Jones (Ospreys), Rob McCusker (Scarlets), Aaron Shingler (Scarlets), Justin Tipuric (Ospreys), Josh Turnbull (Scarlets), Sam Warburton (Cardiff Blues, captain).Like Rugby World? Subscribe to the magazine for the latest comprehensive content.