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Faletau and Lewis set for significant Wales milestones in Six Nations finale

International | 16th March 2023

Cardiff duo Taulupe Faletau and Dillon Lewis will reach significant milestones for Wales as Warren Gatland’s men take on France in the Guinness Six Nations finale (KO 2.45pm).

On the back of last week’s victory over Italy, Wales travel to Paris for Super Saturday with six changes made to the starting line-up.

Number eight Faletau, who was on the scoresheet in Rome, will mark his 100th appearance for Wales at Stade de France, 12 years after making his Test debut against Barbarians. 

Meanwhile, prop Lewis is named amongst the replacements, but is in-line to reach a half century of appearances in the famous red jersey.

The ever-present Josh Adams retains his starting spot on the wing, but Liam Williams misses out after suffering a shoulder injury against Italy, with Louis Rees-Zammit taking his place at full back.

Scrum half Tomos Williams joins Lewis Blue and Blacks team-mate on the bench.

Elsewhere, George North and Nick Tompkins return to form the midfield partnership while Aaron Wainwright and Alun Wyn Jones are introduced to the starting pack. Dan Biggar takes over the number 10 jersey

Discussing Faletau's latest achievement, head coach Gatland said: “Toby has been a fantastic servant for Welsh rugby. Even though he’s reaching 100 caps he’s still pretty quiet, but he’s incredibly well respected by the players for what he’s achieved. “I remember in the early years he was just a constant and he became absolutely world class in terms of his performances.“There’s a lot of things that people don’t see in terms of his ability to read the game – he’ll run support lines that people don’t see. You see that when you’re going back through the videos and there have been times where he’s been on the end of a pass and scored tries. We saw that last week, Rhys Webb makes a break and Toby scores a try.“Getting 100 caps is a great recognition for what he’s achieved in the game. It’s fantastic for him and his family and hopefully we can go out there and give him a really good performance and something for him to remember.”

Gatland added: “Last weekend was really important for us getting a win in the Six Nations and building a bit of confidence. It was a step in the right direction but there’s still lots for us to work on.“We’ve worked hard on a few things in terms of tidying some of the defensive lapses that we’ve made and getting some of those things right. We’re still working hard on our attack. I think France last weekend put in probably one of the best performances seen in a long, long time. They’re the number two team in the world. They bring a really physical approach to the way they play and they’ve tended to start well. “So that’s the important thing. We’ve got to go out there and start well, make sure we’re in that arm wrestle with them and give ourselves that opportunity. “They’re a team that kick the ball a lot, so we’ve also got to make sure that our backfield is right and we’ve got to be good in the air.”

Cardiff Arms Park is the place to be for Super Saturday! Join us for food and drink offers and plenty of screens to soak up the day's mouth-watering rugby action - including Wales v France, Ireland v England and Scotland v Italy. To book your table, please contact [email protected] 

15. Louis Rees-Zammit (Gloucester Rugby / Caerloyw– 24 caps)14. Josh Adams (Cardiff Rugby / Caerdydd – 48 caps)13. George North (Ospreys / Gweilch– 112 caps)12. Nick Tompkins (Saracens – 26 caps)11. Rio Dyer (Dragons /Dreigiau – 6 caps)10. Dan Biggar (Toulon – 106 caps)9. Rhys Webb (Ospreys / Gweilch– 39 caps)1. Wyn Jones (Scarlets – 47 caps)2. Ken Owens (Scarlets – 90 caps) captain / capten3. Tomas Francis (Ospreys / Gweilch– 70 caps)4. Adam Beard (Ospreys / Gweilch – 45 caps) 5. Alun Wyn Jones (Ospreys / Gweilch – 157 caps)6. Aaron Wainwright (Dragons / Dregiau– 36 caps)7. Justin Tipuric (Ospreys / Gweilch – 92 caps)8. Taulupe Faletau (Cardiff Rugby / Caerdydd – 99 caps)Replacements16. Bradley Roberts (Dragons / Dreigiau – 4 caps)17. Gareth Thomas (Ospreys / Gweilch– 20 caps) 18. Dillon Lewis (Cardiff Rugby / Caerdydd– 49 caps)19. Dafydd Jenkins (Exeter Chiefs / Caerwysg – 5 caps)20. Tommy Reffell (Leicester Tigers / Caerlŷr – 8 caps)21. Tomos Williams (Cardiff Rugby / Caerdydd– 44 caps)22. Owen Williams (Ospreys / Gweilch– 6 caps)23. Leigh Halfpenny (Scarlets – 98 caps)