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Warburton To Lead Wales Against England

1st March 2007

The Principality Premiership player of the month for January, Sam Warburton, will captain Wales Under 19 against England at Aberavon tomorrow night (kick-off 7.15pm).

The Blues youngster takes over from Scarlets lock Josh Turnbull as skipper in the third warm-up game for the Under 19s ahead of the IRB Under 19 World Championships in April.

"Josh did a very good job as captain in the last two games but, as with other aspects of the team, we are using these games to experiment," said Wales Under 19 Head Coach Justin Burnell.

"Sam is a proven leader and he was captain of the Wales Under 18 team last season. Both Sam and Josh have a lot of potential and could go on to bigger and better things, so it is important that they gain experience of leadership at this level."

Burnell has made four changes, one of them positional, from the team beaten 30-19 in France. In the backs, UWIC's Rhys Williams returns to partner Luke Ford in the centre in place of Nick Harwood and James Egan takes over from Leigh Halfpenny on the left wing.

Up front, Josh Turnbull moves up into the second row in place of fellow Scarlet Haydn Pugh to allow Blues flanker Jevon Groves to return to the back row.

"Every player in the squad has had a chance to show what they can do in these three games. It will be another good Test for us against England," added Burnell.

"All the countries are in the final stages of preparation so we will see what both sides have to offer tomorrow night."

The Welsh side overcame Ireland 31-9 at Stradey Park before falling to France in Brive. Wales kick off their IRB World Championship campaign against New Zealand on 5 May and also face Samoa and Argentina in Pool A

Wales: Daniel Evans (Scarlets); Jimmy Norris (Dragons), Luke Ford (Blues), Rhys Williams (Scarlets), James Egan (Blues); David Langdon (Dragons), Rhys Webb (Ospreys); Ryan Bevington (Ospreys), Huw Dowden (Blues), Patrick Palmer (Blues), Nathan White (Ospreys), Josh Turnbull (Scarlets), Jevon Groves (Blues), Lloyd Phillips (Scarlets), Sam Warburton (Blues, captain).

Replacements from: Ben Roberts (Dragons), Lloyd Elliott (Ospreys), Philip Price (Ospreys), Haydn Pugh (Scarlets) Jonathan Griffiths (Ospreys), Rhys Dyer (Blues), Gareth Owen (Ospreys), Luke Hathaway (Ospreys),Nick Harwood (Ospreys) Leigh Halfpenny (Ospreys)