Jenkins will lead Wales against England
Toulon prop rather than Sam Warburton chosen for captaincy after Jones ruled out
Sam Warburton of Wales gestures during the match between Scotland and Wales at Murrayfield. Photograph: Stu Forster/Getty Images
Wales boss Rob Howley has decided for a second successive game not to reinstall Warburton — last season’s Grand Slam skipper — as captain, preferring instead to let him concentrate on his own game.
That approach worked a treat at Murrayfield five days ago when Warburton delivered a towering man-of-the-match display.
The victory over Scotland set a Wales record of five successive Six Nations away wins, although the reigning champions have not won a Test match at the Millennium Stadium this season.
Howley has named an unchanged back division for the fifth game running, with Mike Phillips making his 77th Test match appearance to become Wales’ most capped scrum-half.
Wales will retain the title if they beat by England by seven points — and stay ahead of them on overall try-count — or eight points and above, when try-count becomes irrelevant.
England, meanwhile, are chasing a first Grand Slam since 2003, with none of their previous 12 tournament clean sweeps having been achieved in Cardiff.
The Wales team features 12 players who started last season’s Grand Slam clincher against France and boasts a combined tally of more than 600 caps.
Howley said: “The players have worked very hard to put themselves in this position for Saturday, with three hard-fought victories on the road.
“Gethin comes back in and will captain the side. His leadership will be invaluable.
“Saturday is a big finale for the tournament, but we have a very experienced squad that has been in this position before and that has played in big games. That will be important, come kick-off.”
Wales: L Halfpenny (Cardiff Blues); A Cuthbert (Cardiff Blues), J Davies (Scarlets), J Roberts (Cardiff Blues), G North (Scarlets); D Biggar (Ospreys), M Phillips (Bayonne); G Jenkins (Toulon, capt), R Hibbard (Ospreys), A Jones (Ospreys), A-W Jones (Ospreys), I Evans (Ospreys), S Warburton (Cardiff Blues), J Tipuric (Ospreys), T Faletau (Newport Gwent Dragons). Replacements: K Owens (Scarlets), P James (Bath), S Andrews (Cardiff Blues), A Coombs (Newport Gwent Dragons), A Shingler (Scarlets), L Williams (Cardiff Blues), J Hook (Perpignan), S Williams (Scarlets).