Gareth Delve has today (Monday) been called into the Wales squad preparing for the fourth round RBS 6 Nations clash with Ireland at Croke Park this Saturday.
The Gloucester captain and No 8 boosts a forward contingent which has recently lost, through injury, Ospreys lock Alun-Wyn Jones together with Blues second row Deiniol Jones and, through suspension, Blues back row Andy Powell.
But the nine-times capped Delve, who returns to the international scene for the first time since 2008, will also provide cover for the Wales captain Ryan Jones whose calf problems have been well documented during the current campaign.
"We are expecting Ryan to be fine," said Wales assistant coach Neil Jenkins.
"But we have called on Gareth to boost the squad numbers in the forwards and provide cover in that back row area.
"We have been keeping a close eye on him, no one more so than Shaun Edwards whose Wasps side beat Gloucester at the weekend, and we think he has been playing well and will do a job for us if called upon."
Gareth DELVE (GLOUCESTER RUGBY - Cap No 1,043)
DoB: 30.12.82. 6'3" / 1.91m. 17st 13lbs / 114kgs
International record: 9 caps (W 4, L 5; 5 pts - 1T)
Nearly 40 players were involved in the first Wales Under 18 training session of the season. WRU National Performance Manager Gethin Watts is excited at the potential shown by the group and expects the Regional Under 18 Championship to hone their skills even further.