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Five academy stars named in Wales U20 squad for Ireland

Pathway | 13th March 2019

Five Cardiff Blues academy stars have been named in Gareth Williams’ squad as Wales U20s look to end Irish hopes of a Grand Slam at Zipworld Stadium.

While Warren Gatland’s senior squad will be targeting a monumental Grand Slam of their own at the Principality Stadium on Saturday, Ireland are targeting age-grade success.

But they face Wales U20s first and following a mixed campaign they are determined to finish on a high by spoiling Ireland Under-20s’ party.

Ben Warren, Teddy Williams and Ioan Davies all hold onto their starting spots, with full-back Davies moving to the wing. Max Llewellyn drops to the bench, where Ioan Rhys Davies is also named.

Wales U20s head coach, Williams said: "It was a big aim of ours to win the championship but that is obviously off the table after our disappointing defeat to Scotland last time out but Friday is still a Test match at international level, against a traditional rival in Ireland so I’m sure it will be a fantastic occasion.

"Ireland will be very driven to finish the job off after claiming the Championship with one round to go but if we show the quality and passion from the England game then we should be able to give a good account of ourselves.

"We know Ireland are seeking a Grand Slam, but we are focused on ourselves, we’re appreciative on how well they have done this campaign and they are a real threat and possess leadership across the park. But the boys are determined to finish the campaign off on a high note in front of a big home crowd."

Wales U20 v Ireland, Zipworld Stadium, Fri March 15, KO 7.05pm (Live on S4C)

15 Cai Evans (Ospreys) 14 Tomi Lewis (Scarlets) 13 Tiaan Thomas-Wheeler (Ospreys) 12 Aneurin Owen (Dragons) 11 Ioan Davies (Cardiff Blues) 10 Sam Costelow (Leicester Tigers) 09 Dafydd Buckland (Dragons); 01 Rhys Davies (Ospreys) 02 Dewi Lake (Ospreys – CAPT) 03 Ben Warren (Cardiff Blues) 04 Ed Scragg (Dragons) 05 Teddy Williams (Cardiff Blues) 06 Ellis Thomas (Llanelli) 07 Jac Morgan (Aberarvon/Scarlets) 08 Iestyn Rees (Scarlets)

Replacements: 16 Will Griffiths (Dragons) 17 Tom Devine (Dragons) 18 Nick English (Bristol Bears) 19 Jac Price (Scarlets) 20 Ioan Rhys Davies (Cardiff Blues) 21 Dan Babos (Dragons) 22 Max Llewellyn (Cardiff Blues) 23 Ryan Conbeer (Scarlets)