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Bevacqua drafted into Wales under-20 side for Irish challenge

Pathway | 5th February 2020

Theo Bevacqua has been drafted into the Wales under-20 starting line-up for Friday’s trip to Cork to take on Ireland.

Head coach Gareth Williams has made a total of three changes as Wales look to bounce back from last week’s Six Nations opening day defeat to Italy.

Bevacqua is joined in the front row by regional team-mate, Ben Warren, who retains the number three jersey.

Cardiff Blues academy’s Ioan R Davies also keeps his place in the back row.

Fellow back row, Gwilym Bradley, who recently joined Cardiff Blues academy as a Welsh exile, is in line for his debut at this level from the bench.

Former Cardiff Blues age grade player, Ioan Lloyd, who is now with Bristol Bears, is given the nod at full back, while the other change in the side sees Will Griffiths introduced at hooker.

Defending champions Ireland sit top of the points table courtesy of a healthier points difference than England and will scent Welsh blood after an impressive 38-26 victory against Scotland.“Naturally we are disappointed with the result and elements of our performance against Italy, but this week is about dealing with that and moving forward,” said head coach Williams.

“We still have four internationals left that act as great opportunities to move players forward in their development. Ireland will be a big challenge, and the atmosphere will be electric. These are the type of environments we want to expose our young players to.

“There are some areas we have worked hard to tighten up on this week, and challenged ourselves to execute better to keep Ireland under pressure which was something we didn’t do to Italy, although I thought Italy were excellent in their performance.

“We have a clear understanding of our responsibility for development, and defeats like last week can act as effective learning experiences. But we’re a competitive and proud group, and want to get back  to success against opposition we have the utmost respect for.”

Wales U20 v Ireland U20, Irish Independent Park, Friday 7 February, KO 7.15pm (Live, BBC2 Wales)
15 Ioan Lloyd (Bristol Bears)
14 Daniel John (Millfield School)
13 Osian Knott (Scarlets)
12 Aneurin Owen (Dragons)
11 Ewan Rosser (Dragons)
10 Sam Costelow (Leicester Tigers)
9 Dafydd Buckland (Dragons)
1 Theo Bevacqua (Cardiff Blues)
2 Will Griffiths (Dragons)
3 Ben Warren (Cardiff Blues)
4 Jac Price (Scarlets)
5 Ben Carter (Dragons)
6 Ioan Davies (Cardiff Blues)
7 Jac Morgan (Scarlets - CAPT)
8 Morgan Strong (Ospreys)

16 Dom Booth  (Scarlets)
17 Callum Williams (Scarlets)
18 Archie Griffin (Bath Rugby)
19 James Fender (Ospreys)
20 Gwilym Bradley (Cardiff Blues)
21 Ellis Bevan (Cardiff Met)
22 Bradley Roderick (Ospreys)
23 Josh Thomas (Ospreys)