Michael Owen is set to become Wales' 1,000th international when he wins
his first cap against South Africa on Saturday in Bloemfontein (Kick-
off 2.00pm BST).
The 21-year-old Pontypridd powerhouse has been handed his debut after a
highly impressive season at Sardis Road. He will feature in the back row
alongside Cardiff's Martyn Williams and skipper Colin Charvis.
Andy Marinos has ended speculation over his fitness after taking his place in
a centre partnership with Wales' British Lion Mark Taylor. Meanwhile, Dwayne Peel has been named at scrum half following the international retirement of Rob Howley.
The uncapped Pontypridd trio of Mefin Davies, Robert Sidoli and Richard Parks
are on the replacements bench alongside world record-points scorer Neil
Wales coach Steve Hansen said: "It's not just about results, it's about the performance.
"Michael Owen has been in good form and he's the type of player who doesn't make mistakes.
"He will give us a good line out option and to become the 1,000th cap is a very special honour."
Wales Team v South Africa
Kevin Morgan (Swansea); Rhys Williams (Cardiff), Mark Taylor(Swansea), Andy
Marinos (Newport), Craig Morgan (Cardiff); Stephen Jones (Llanelli), Dwayne Peel (Llanelli); Iestyn Thomas (Llanelli), Robin McBryde (Llanelli), Ben Evans (Swansea), Gareth Llewellyn (Neath), Steve Williams (Northampton),
Michael Owen (Pontypridd), Martyn Williams (Cardiff), Colin Charvis
Replacements: Mefin Davies Pontypridd), Martyn Madden (Llanelli), Robert Sidoli (Pontypridd), Richard Parks Pontypridd), Ryan Powell (Cardiff), Neil Jenkins (Cardiff), Tom Shanklin (Saracens)
As the countdown continues for RWC2015, Tournament Chief Executive Debbie Jevans visited the Millennium Stadium to discuss preparations for the eight matches and reveal the positive news that 100,000 tickets for games at the home of Welsh rugby have sold in the last seven days.
Jason Harries is targeting a first win on the World Series circuit this season with Wales. The series returns to action this weekend in Dubai where Harries is part of a team hoping to build from its efforts in round one in October.
Wales skipper Jevon Groves says his side have addressed a few points from Gold Coast and aim to 'hit the ground running' in the next two rounds of the World Series, kicking off with this weekend in Dubai before heading off to South Africa next week.
Wales Sevens manager Steff Thomas is hopeful his side can build from a quarter-final spot in the opening round of the World Series in Australia when his side take part in the forthcoming double header in Dubai and South Africa.