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Wales to replace North with Williams against South Africa

| 28.11.2014

Wales are set to replace their injured winger George North with Liam Williams, as they take on South Africa in the final match of the Autumn Internationals series.

They welcome their visitors, who are odds-on favourites with Coral at 2/5 for the win, following a respectable campaign, which saw them push Australia close in their first match.

Scarletts full back Williams, 11/5 to score anytime, has learned from his mistakes, according to head coach Warren Gatland, having conceded a decisive penalty in June’s agonising 31-30 defeat to the Springboks.

“That will make him stronger and better as a player,” Gatland stated. “I think he’s learnt from those past mistakes and experiences.

“He’s been playing really well, particularly at full-back,” Gatland continued. “It’s a chance for him to get another run-out on the wing.”

Williams is one of a number of enforced changes that Wales has had to make for the match, though the New Zealand native still has confidence in the strength of his team.

“We have had a couple of changes forced upon us, with the injury to George [North] and with Paul James and Richard Hibbard returning to their clubs but we have named what we think is a very strong side,” said Gatland, whose side are 15/8 to win.

Wales were humbled by the All Blacks last time out 34-16, though still put up a brave fight. Rhys Webb scored the only try for Gatland’s side, and is 7/2 to cross the whitewash anytime.

South Africa, meanwhile, followed up their narrow win over England with a comfortable 22-6 win over Italy, in which Coeni Oosthuizen scored first. The 25-year-old wrecking ball is 7/1 to breach the in-goal area anytime in the same market for a second consecutive week.

Wales: Leigh Halfpenny (Toulon), Alex Cuthbert (Cardiff Blues), Jonathan Davies (Clermont Auvergne), Jamie Roberts (Racing Metro), Liam Williams (Scarlets), Dan Biggar (Ospreys), Rhys Webb (Ospreys); Gethin Jenkins (Cardiff Blues), Scott Baldwin (Ospreys), Samson Lee (Scarlets), Jake Ball (Scarlets), Alun Wyn Jones (Ospreys), Dan Lydiate (unattached), Sam Warburton (Cardiff Blues, capt), Taulupe Faletau (Newport Gwent Dragons).

Replacements: Emyr Phillips (Scarlets), Aaron Jarvis (Ospreys), Rhodri Jones (Scarlets), Luke Charteris (Racing Metro), James King (Ospreys), Mike Phillips (Racing Metro), Rhys Priestland (Scarlets), Scott Williams (Scarlets).



Matt Haynes

A long-suffering Leeds fan, Matt studied Sports Journalism at university, and has a plethora of multi-industry experience. Having worked on behalf of multiple hedge funds and top-tier investment banks in executive search, he has also had a stint with the BBC and the Press Association. Outside of work, he pursues entrepreneurial activities and likes to keep fit.
Although he has interviewed current England manager Roy Hodgson as well as Rafa Benitez and a number of other names, he is honoured to have spent time in the company of Gordon Banks. Matt enjoys cultivating long-lasting professional and personal relationships, is solution orientated, and supports Coral’s sports content provision.