Wales head coach Warren Gatland has made nine changes for his final match in charge against New Zealand in the Rugby World Cup third-place play-off.
Friday’s bronze medal match at Tokyo Stadium in Chofu will bring down the curtain on Gatland’s 12-year stint at the helm of Wales.
New Zealander Gatland will coach the British and Irish Lions in South Africa in 2021, while he has also signed on to lead Super Rugby outfit the Chiefs on a four-year deal.
Injuries mean Tomas Francis (shoulder), George North (hamstring), Aaron Wainwright (hamstring) and Leigh Halfpenny (concussion) will sit out the clash with the All Blacks, having started in the semi-final loss to South Africa.
FIRST LOOK Our team to face the @AllBlacks in the #RWC2019 Bronze Final – as announced by the clubs that inspired the players. Mae ein cyhoeddiad tîm olaf y gystadleuaeth yn un arwyddocaol i’r chwaraewyr. #HWFN pic.twitter.com/d3QDGJazmG
— Welsh Rugby Union (@WelshRugbyUnion) October 30, 2019
Owen Lane, Nicky Smith and James Davis come into the starting XV, Hallam Amos takes over from Halfpenny at full-back, while Adam Beard returns to partner captain Alun Wyn Jones.
There is also an opportunity for Tomos Williams and Rhys Patchell to form a new half-back partnership for Wales, as Owen Watkin features alongside Jonathan Davies against the dethroned world champions.
Wales: Hallam Amos, Owen Lane, Jonathan Davies, Owen Watkin, Josh Adams, Rhys Patchell, Tomos Williams; Nicky Smith, Ken Owens, Dillon Lewis, Adam Beard, Alun Wyn Jones, Justin Tipuric, James Davies, Ross Moriarty.
Replacements: Elliot Dee, Rhys Carre, Wyn Jones, Jake Ball, Aaron Shingler, Gareth Davies, David Biggar, Hadleigh Parkes.
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