Wales will kick off the Autumn Nations Cup against Ireland on Friday evening (KO 19.00) with prop Tomas Francis winning his 50th cap and captain Alun Wyn Jones making his 150th test appearance (141st appearance for Wales, plus 9 British & Irish Lions caps).
Francis packs down again alongside Rhys Carre and Ryan Elias in the front-row with Will Rowlands and Jones continuing their partnership in the second-row. Justin Tipuric returns to the starting line-up after recovering from tonsillitis and features alongside Shane Lewis-Hughes and Taulupe Faletau.
Wales have named an unchanged back-line with Gareth Davies and Dan Biggar at half-back, with Owen Watkin and Jonathan Davies partnering in the midfield. Josh Adams, Liam Williams and Leigh Halfpenny are named in the back-three.
“Friday night is the start of a new international season and a new campaign and we are looking forward to getting out there and showing what we can do,” said Wales head coach Wayne Pivac.
“We have got four matches in the Autumn Nations Cup to perform and we are excited to be kicking the tournament off.”
On the bench Elliot Dee, Wyn Jones and Samson Lee provide the front-row cover with Jake Ball and Aaron Wainwright completing the forward contingent. Uncapped fly-half Callum Sheedy is named in the matchday squad for the first time.
Sheedy is joined on the bench by Lloyd Williams and George North, the latter in line for his 100th test appearance if he takes to the field (currently on 96 Wales caps plus 3 British & Irish Lions).
WALES TEAM TO PLAY IRELAND
1. Rhys Carre (Cardiff Blues (10 Caps)
2. Ryan Elias (Scarlets) (15 Caps)
3. Tomas Francis (Exeter Chiefs) (49 Caps)
4. Will Rowlands (Wasps) (2 Caps)
5. Alun Wyn Jones (Ospreys) (140 Caps) (CAPT)
6. Shane Lewis-Hughes (Cardiff Blues) (1 Cap)
7. Justin Tipuric (Ospreys) (77 Caps)
8. Taulupe Faletau (Bath) (78 Caps)
9. Gareth Davies (Scarlets) (55 Caps)
10. Dan Biggar (Northampton Saints) (85 Caps)
11. Josh Adams (Cardiff Blues) (26 Caps)
12. Owen Watkin (Ospreys) (23 Caps)
13. Jonathan Davies (Scarlets) (83 Caps)
14. Liam Williams (Scarlets) (64 Caps)
15. Leigh Halfpenny (Scarlets) (91 Caps)
16. Elliot Dee (Dragons) (29 Caps)
17. Wyn Jones (Scarlets) (26 Caps)
18. Samson Lee (Scarlets) (42 Caps)
19. Jake Ball (Scarlets) (46 Caps)
20. Aaron Wainwright (Dragons) (23 Caps)
21. Lloyd Williams (Cardiff Blues) (28 Caps)
22. Callum Sheedy (Bristol) (*Uncapped)
23. George North (Ospreys) (96 Caps)