Same again for Wales

Sam Warburton will lead an unchanged Wales starting XV for their Six Nations clash against Ireland in Cardiff on Saturday.

Wales coach Warren Gatland has opted for continuity by retaining the same team that beat France 20-13. There are two injury-enforced changes to the squad on the bench, though, with Scarlets duo Rob Evans and Jake Ball replacing loosehead prop Paul James and lock Bradley Davies respectively.

Warburton, who equalled Ryan Jones' record against the French, will become the sole holder of the most caps (34) as captain of Wales, when he runs out to face the Irish in what will be a must-win match for the Dragons if they are to keep their Six Nations title hopes alive. 

'Ireland are the form team in Europe and we know it's going to be a huge battle,' said Gatland.

'We return to the Millennium Stadium after two tough away trips with two victories and will be looking to build on that.

'We saw an improvement against Scotland and then saw another step up against France and we know we'll need to do the same against Ireland on Saturday.'

Wales – 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 George North, 13 Jonathan Davies, 12 Jamie Roberts, 11 Liam Williams, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Rhys Webb, 8 Toby Faletau, 7 Sam Warburton (c), 6 Dan Lydiate, 5 Alun-Wyn Jones, 4 Luke Charteris, 3 Samson Lee, 2 Scott Baldwin, 1 Gethin Jenkins.
Subs: 16 Richard Hibbard, 17 Rob Evans, 18 Aaron Jarvis, 19 Jake Ball, 20 Justin Tipuric, 21 Mike Phillips, 22 Rhys Priestland, 23 Scott Williams.

Photo: Steve Haag/Getty Images

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Mariette Adams