Wales name unchanged side to face Italy in Six Nations
ROB Howley has announced the Welsh side that won in France last weekend will remain unchanged for their trip to Italy on February 23.
Interim head coach Howley says he has taken the decision to reward the players who ground out a gutsy 16-6 victory in Paris on Saturday.
Captain Sam Warburton and Ospreys lock Alun Wyn Jones are both expected to be fit enough to play in Rome, but their rivals for the same positions - Justin Tipuric and Andrew Coombs - will keep their starting places.
"On the back of the performance at the weekend, we have decided to reward the players who took to the field and the same XV who started in Paris will start against Italy," said Howley.
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"It's a reward for their performance. We talked about attitude, determination and resilience and a side that comes up with a win out in France, which is not an easy place to win on any occasion, deserves to start the next match.
"Obviously we are mindful that the XV selected is dependent on injuries, with some players playing before next week, but if everyone comes through it will be the same XV.
"I thought Ryan (Jones) was outstanding in terms of his leadership and he will captain the side against Italy. Sam (Warburton) is still feeling the stinger to some extent but it has improved but I just want to clarify that the team comes first and the way the team played, they deserve to start again."
The full 23-man squad to face Italy will be announced on Tuesday February 19.
WALES: Leigh Halfpenny; Alex Cuthbert, Jonathan Davies, Jamie Roberts, George North; Dan Biggar, Mike Phillips; Gethin Jenkins, Richard Hibbard, Adam Jones, Andrew Coombs, Ian Evans, Ryan Jones (capt), Toby Faletau, Justin Tipuric.