Anscombe To Start For Depleted Wales Against All Blacks

Anscombe to start for depleted Wales against All Blacks

Cardiff, United Kingdom, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 28th Oct, 2021 ) :Gareth Anscombe is set to make his first Test start in more than two years after being named at fly-half in the Wales side to play the All Blacks in Cardiff on Saturday.

The New Zealand-born stand-off has not played a Test match since August 2019, when he suffered major ligament damage in a World Cup warm-up against England.

But with England-based Dan Biggar and Callum Sheedy unavailable as their clubs are not obliged to release them for a match taking place outside the designated window for Tests, Ospreys No 10 Anscombe was chosen in the team announced by Wales coach Wayne Pivac on Thursday The 27-times capped Anscombe, 30, has impressed in three Ospreys matches in the United Rugby Championship since returning to action last month and has been selected ahead of Rhys Priestland, who is on the bench.

The scheduling of Saturday's fixture means Wales are also without first-choice players in wing Louis Rees-Zammit and No. 8 Taulupe Faletau, who are among seven England-based players.

Wales will also be missing the injured George North, Leigh Halfpenny, Justin Tipuric and Josh Navidi.

New Zealand-born centre Willis Halaholo is isolating after testing positive for Covid-19 and Liam Williams is recovering from appendix surgery.

Wales, who have not beaten the All Blacks since 1953, are seeking to end a run of 31 successive defeats against the side.

Captain Alun Wyn Jones will be winning his 149th Wales cap this weekend, the veteran lock overtaking former New Zealand skipper Richie McCaw's total for one country.

Jones, who has also played 12 Tests for the British and Irish Lions, will pack down alongside Adam Beard, with Taine Basham making a first Test start in an all-Ospreys back row featuring Ross Moriarty and Aaron Wainwright.

Wales were forced into a late change, having initially announced their matchday 23, when hooker Ken Owens suffered a training ground injury. His place was taken by Ryan Elias, with Kirby Myhill drafted onto the bench.