New Lions skipper Gareth Thomas will have to cast his mind back more than three years to get his bearings about playing at centre in international rugby.
Thomas was handed Brian O'Driscoll's outside centre role to go with the skipper's armband for Saturday's decisive second-test against the All Blacks, but although Wales's record try scorer boasts a wealth of international experience, he hasn't played at centre on the international stage since a Welsh defeat at Twickenham in March, 2002.
Thomas played at full back during Wales's Grand Slam winning campaign, his last twelve Test outings all coming in the No.15 shirt, and has only played at centre in four of his last 63 games for Wales and 14 in a total of 83 caps.
However, the man who was at centre against Australia in 1996 when he recorded the longest interception try in Welsh rugby history at Cardiff Arms Park, filled in at centre for Toulouse twice in the French Championship last season and shouldn't be too rusty. While he has never played at centre before with his new midfield partner Gavin Henson, both are products of the Pencoed mini-rugby system that also spawned one of the Lions' greatest centres, Scott Gibbs.
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