Ireland v Wales: Welsh player profiles

John O’Sullivan takes a look at the visiting side to take on Ireland at Lansdowne Road

Wales’ Dan Biggar during the kicker session at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin ahead of their Six Nations meeting with Ireland. Photo: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Wales’ Dan Biggar during the kicker session at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin ahead of their Six Nations meeting with Ireland. Photo: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

 

15 Leigh Halfpenny

Age: 29 Height: 5’10 Weight: 87kg (13st 9lbs) Caps: 75 Points: 671

Missed the England match with a foot infection and given his two-try performance against the Scots, his absence was keenly felt.

14 Liam Williams

Age: 26 Height: 6’1” Weight: 86kg (13st 7lbs) Caps: 45 Points: 40

A class act on the Lions tour last summer where he made the fullback jersey his own, he’ll punish any loose kicking and gives his side an aerial presence.

13 Scott Williams

Age: 27 Height: 6’1” Weight: 99kg (15st 8lbs) Caps: 53 Points: 60

Gets the chance to play in his preferred position in the absence of the injured Jonathan Davies, might have been a match winner against England but for a wonderful tackle.

Wales’ Scott Williams being tackled by England’s George Ford during their clash two weeks ago. Photo: Facundo Arrizabalaga/EPA
Wales’ Scott Williams being tackled by England’s George Ford during their clash two weeks ago. Photo: Facundo Arrizabalaga/EPA

12 Hadleigh Parkes

Age: 29 Height: 6’2” Weight: 100kg (15st 10lbs) Caps: 3 Points: 10

The New Zealand born centre is a powerful runner, his shrewd lines and offloading game make him a handful.

11 Steff Evans

Age: 23 Height: 6’ Weight: 95kg (14st 13lbs) Caps: 7 Points: 20

Those who have watched him play in the Pro14 will understand his ability in attack although from an Irish perspective they’ll be looking to work him going in the opposite direction.

10 Dan Biggar

Age: 28 Height: 6’2” Weight: 93kg (14st 9lbs) Caps: 60 Points: 295

A timely return , his experience and ability will provide a steadying hand, an excellent kicking game and an aerial threat on kick/chase.

9 Gareth Davies

Age: 27 Height: 5’10” Weight: 88kg (13st 12lbs)Caps: 29 Points: 5

The top try scorer in the then Pro12 in the 2013/14 seasons ago and given his tally of one every three games, it underlines his running threat.

Gareth Davies looks across the scrum during Wales’ loss to England. Photo: Julian Finney/Getty Images
Gareth Davies looks across the scrum during Wales’ loss to England. Photo: Julian Finney/Getty Images

1 Rob Evans

Age: 25 Height: 6’1” Weight: 118kg (18st 8lbs) Caps: 22 Points: 5

As befits someone who plays his club rugby with the Scarlets, he is comfortable on the ball as well as possessing the aptitude for grittier duties.

2 Ken Owens

Age: 30 Height: 6’ Weight: 97kg (15st 3lbs) Caps: 54 Points: 15

An excellent hooker, his all-round game is impressive while he also possesses real leadership qualities.

3 Samson Lee

Age: 25 Height: 5’11” Weight: 120kg (18st 12lbs) Caps: 36 Points: 5

Has had an occasional rough ride with injury but is back to his best locking out the scrum and throwing some nice flick passes.

4 Cory Hill

Age: 26 Height: 6’5” Weight: 117kg (18st 5lbs) Caps: 12 Points: 0

There was an expectation that Bradley Davies would start in the Six Nations but Hill has thoroughly justified his place with his athleticism and work-rate.

5 Alun Wyn Jones (capt)

Age: 32 Height: 6’6” Weight: 118kg (18st 8lbs) Caps: 115 Points: 45

One of the outstanding forwards in world rugby and his consistent excellence and abrasiveness mark him as a key player for his country.

Alun Wyn Jones will be key to Wales’ hopes of beating Ireland. Photo: Billy Stickland/Inpho
Alun Wyn Jones will be key to Wales’ hopes of beating Ireland. Photo: Billy Stickland/Inpho

6 Aaron Shingler

Age: 29 Height: 6’6” Weight: 108kg (17st) Caps: 15 Points: 0

A superb athlete for such a big man and as he proved against England, some nifty footwork too; gives his side an additional lineout presence.

7 Josh Navidi

Age: 27 Height: 6’1” Weight: 105kg (16st 7lbs) Caps: 9 Points: 0

Has done a sterling job in the absence of Sam Warburton. The Irish are well versed with his quality from the Pro14.

8 Ross Moriarty

Age: 23 Height: 6’2” Weight: 103kg (16st 3lbs) Caps: 19 Points: 10

A tough, hard carrying, hard hitting number eight and a son of former Welsh international Paul.

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