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Navidi starts for Wales

30th January 2018

Josh Navidi has held onto the number seven jersey for Wales' NatWest 6 Nations opener against Scotland at the Principality Stadium on Saturday.

He is one of two Cardiff Blues players in the 23-man squad with Gareth Anscombe among the replacements.

Warren Gatland has handed a debut to in-form Worcester Warriors wing Josh Adams on the wing. Leigh Halfpenny and Steff Evans complete the back-three alongside Adams with Hadleigh Parkes and Scott Williams partnering in the midfield. Rhys Patchell and Gareth Davies take their regional partnership onto the international stage.

Rob Evans, Ken Owens and Samson Lee pack down together with Cory Hill named alongside captain Alun Wyn Jones in the second-row.

Aaron Shingler Josh Navidi, who started alongside each other three times in the autumn, start with British & Irish Lion Ross Moriarty at number eight.
“The first-up game against Scotland this weekend is really important for us and this is a great chance for this group of players to get us off to a good start” said Wales Head Coach Warren Gatland.

“We have been watching Josh (Adams) closely, he is top try scorer in the English Premiership and has been going well and we are excited for him.

“Both Rhys (Patchell) and Gareth (Anscombe) have been training really well over the last couple of weeks.  It was a tough call between them, Rhys has started most of his games for the Scarlets at ten, we are really happy with his form and the combination with Gareth at nine.

“We know what a quality player Ross is, it's great he is back and available and we are looking forward to seeing his explosive ball carrying on Saturday.

“For this opening game, we looked at a lot of combinations, especially the front-row.  It is exciting to see Samson back playing well and the familiarity of the Scarlets front-row will be important.”
Elliot Dee, Wyn Jones and Tomas Francis provide the front-row cover on the bench with Ospreys duo Bradley Davies and Justin Tipuric completing the forward contingent.  Aled Davies, Gareth Anscombe and Owen Watkin provide the back-line cover.
Leigh Halfpenny (Scarlets) (74 Caps)
Josh Adams (Worcester) (*UNCAPPED)
Scott Williams (Scarlets) (51 Caps)
Hadleigh Parkes (Scarlets) (1 Cap)
Steff Evans (Scarlets) (5 Caps)
Rhys Patchell (Scarlets) (5 Caps)
Gareth Davies (Scarlets) (27 Caps)
Rob Evans (Scarlets) (20 Caps)
Ken Owens (Scarlets) (52 Caps)
Samson Lee (Scarlets) (34 Caps)
Cory Hill (Dragons) (10 Caps)
Alun Wyn Jones (Ospreys) (113 Caps) CAPT
Aaron Shingler (Scarlets) (13 Caps)
Josh Navidi (Cardiff Blues) (7 Caps)
Ross Moriarty (Gloucester) (17 Caps)

Elliot Dee (Dragons) (2 Caps)
Wyn Jones (Scarlets) (5 Caps)
Tomas Francis (Exeter Chiefs) (26 Caps)
Bradley Davies (Ospreys) (57 Caps)
Justin Tipuric (Ospreys)  (52 Caps)
Aled Davies (Scarlets) (5 Caps)
Gareth Anscombe (Cardiff Blues) (11 Caps)
Owen Watkin (Ospreys) (2 Caps)