Jasmine Joyce and Hannah Jones have been named in the Wales Women starting line-up for Sunday’s Women’s Six Nations Championship opener against Italy at Cardiff Arms Park (1pm).
The experienced pair missed the side’s five-match autumn series after taking up an opportunity to play for Adelaide University in the Australian national sevens league. Alisha Butchers, who also played for the Adelaide ‘Romas’ has been named on a bench that also includes uncapped Ospreys prop Ruth Lewis.
There are first Six Nations starts for full-back Kayleigh Powell, who made her Wales debut in the November win over Ireland, and the front row forwards Gwenllian Pyrs and Kelsey Jones while Molly Kelly, Georgia Evans and Paige Randall are set to make their Six Nations debut if they come off the bench after earning their first caps in the autumn.
Wales Women team v Italy (Sunday 2 February, 1pm, Cardiff Arms Park): Kayleigh Powell; Jasmine Joyce, Hannah Jones, Kerin Lake, Lisa Neumann; Robyn Wilkins, Keira Bevan; Gwenllian Pyrs, Kelsey Jones, Cerys Hale, Natalia John, Gwen Crabb, Alex Callender, Bethan Lewis, Siwan Lillicrap (capt) Replacements: Molly Kelly, Cara Hope, Ruth Lewis, Georgia Evans, Alisha Butchers, Manon Johnes, Ffion Lewis, Paige Randall