sport

Lydiate to skipper Wales

Dan Lydiate is fit to captain Wales in their opening game in South Africa against Eastern Province Kings in Port Elizabeth on Tuesday.

The British and Irish Lions flanker has recovered from a hamstring injury to lead a squad which includes all four uncapped players.

Three of those players are named in Warren Gatland's starting XV. Matthew Morgan lines up at full-back, with Steven Shingler at inside centre and Jordan Williams on the wing.

They are joined in the backline by Cardiff Blues duo Alex Cuthbert and Cory Allen as well as James Hook and Rhodri Williams at half-back.

Paul James is named alongside Scott Baldwin and Rhodri Jones in the front-row with Jake Ball and Ian Evans in the second-row.

Lydiate is joined by Scarlets' Josh Turnbull at flanker with Dan Baker number eight, while Matthew Rees, one of the replacements, is named in a Wales squad for the first time since February.

Gatland explained: "It's an opportunity to see a number the of squad pull on the Wales jersey and represent their country and see how they handle the game and the pressure.

"We know how tough the next few weeks are going to be and that starts on Tuesday and we have to be prepared for a big game and hit the ground running.

"We were keen to have this match, to experience a short turnaround and replicate what we will face at the World Cup next year.

"That preparation is well under way and Tuesday is a great opportunity for players who have impressed this season and at the trial to stake their claim on the international stage."

Wales team: M Morgan (Ospreys), A Cuthbert (Cardiff Blues), C Allen (Cardiff Blues), S Shingler (Scarlets), J Williams (Scarlets), J Hook (Perpignan), R Williams (Scarlets), P James (Bath), S Baldwin (Ospreys), R Jones (Scarlets), J Ball (Scarlets), I Evans (Ospreys), D Lydiate (captain, Racing Metro), J Turnbull (Scarlets), D Baker (Ospreys).

Replacements: M Rees (Cardiff Blues), A Jarvis (Ospreys), S Lee (Scarlets), L Charteris (Perpignan), A Shingler (Scarlets), G Davies (Scarlets), G North (Northampton), L Williams (Scarlets).