Wales Under 21 have lost Cardiff outside half Nicky Robinson to the senior Wales replacements bench at Twickenham following the injury to Stephen Jones.
And with the IRB Young Player of the Year, Swansea's Gavin Henson, ruled out with an injury, it means Newport's Michael Hook will win his first Under 21 cap in the No 10 jersey against England Under 21 at Newbury tonight (kick-off 7.30pm).
Wales will be seeking their fourth successive victory over England in the Six Nations Under 21 Championship. They also beat them in Argentina in an eight-team tournament in 2000.
England's only victory against Wales was in their first meeting in 1998 at
Worcester, winning 46-7.
In their Championship clashes, Wales won 36-21 at Neath in 1999, 15-12 at New Brighton in 2000 and 27-12 at Pontypridd last year.
After winning in Ireland and losing at home to France, Wales defeated Italy at Bridgend by 65-12. They have made a number of changes from that game, including bringing in Wales A No 8 Andrew Powell.
ENGLAND UNDER 21 (v Wales Under 21)
Jon Goodridge (Gloucester); Anthony Elliott (Sale Sharks), Adam Billig (Leicester Tigers), Alex Crockett (Bath), Tom Voyce (Bath); Oliver Barkley (Bath), Ian Vass (Northampton Saints); Michael Holford (Leicester Tigers), Jonathan Roddam (NEC Harlequins), Mark Irish (Gloucester),
Stuart Hooper (Saracens), Martin Purdy (London Wasps), Chris Morgan (Bristol Shoguns), James Scaysbrook (Bath), Mark Soden (Northampton Saints, Captain)
Replacements: Alex Page (London Wasps),
Andy Higgins (Bristol Shoguns), Nick Cox (Gloucester), James Buckland (Northampton Saints), Alistair McKenzie (London Wasps), James Hamilton (Leicester Tigers), Ian Clarke (Leeds Tykes)
WALES UNDER 21
Gareth Swales (Swansea); James Strong (London Welsh), Hal Luscombe (Newport), Matthew Brayley (Swansea, capt), Liam Roberts (Cardiff); Michael Hook (Newport), Michael Phillips (Llanelli);
Paul James (Neath), Adam Matthews (Neath), Adam Jones (Neath), Luke
Tait (Cardiff), Ryan Jones (UWIC), Rhys Williams (Ebbw Vale), Gareth Williams (Llanelli), Andrew Powell (Newport).
Replacements: Matthew Miles (Northampton Saints), Phil John (Llanelli), Ceiron Jones (Llanelli), Nathan Brew (Newport), Rhys Jones
(Newport), Chris Miller (Cardiff), Dafydd Lewis (London Wasps).
The WRU has launched a campaign to create a long term legacy for Welsh club rugby by highlighting the advantages of volunteering. Rhian Edwards, a volunteer at Seven Sisters, has enjoyed many benefits of her volunteering at a grassroots rugby club including being part of the Rugby World Cup volunteer workforce after being nominated by the WRU - and the WRU is asking for more people to develop their 'Welsh rugby roots'.
Wales head coach Warren Gatland and captain Sam Warburton say their first prioirty on Sunday in the opening game of the World Cup is to win against Uruguay and not get overly concerned with points difference.
With only days to go until the biggest rugby competition in the world begins, rugby fans visiting Cardiff this autumn will be able to enjoy a special display at National Museum Cardiff as part of the celebrations surrounding the Rugby World Cup.
Geraint John has taken up the new role of WRU elite coach development manager having arrived in Wales last week. WRU TV caught up with him at the WRU rugby department's strategy day at the Millennium Stadium.
The entire Welsh Rugby Union Rugby Department gathered at the Millennium Stadium earlier this week where WRU Head of Rugby Josh Lewsey looked back on a year where structural and strategic changes have seen significant progress made
The Welsh Rugby Union has released a specially produced video to spearhead a new campaign to help promote the values of rugby union. The video, entitled Let us Play underpins the WRU rugby department's philosophy - to engage, transfer and retain players, coaches and referees.