WALES begin their Six Nations title defenced with a tough trip to in-form Ireland.
Johnny Sexton and Ireland are looking to continue the momentum after an incredible Autumn International victory over New ZealandCredit: Reuters
Dan Biggar takes the Wales captain’s armband in the absence of Alun Wyn JonesCredit: AP
However, if they want to retain their crown this year they will have to do it without captain Alun Wyn Jones.
The lock will undergo a second shoulder operation after injuring it in the Autumn International defeat to New Zealand.
To make matters worse for Wayne Pivac’s side, Alun Wyn Jones is just one name on an extensive injury list.
This list also includes Dan Lydiate (ACL), Ken Owens (back), George North (knee), Leigh Halfpenny (knee), Justin Tipuric (shoulder), Taulupe Faletau (calf), Josh Navidi (shoulder), Elliot Dee (neck), Josh Macleod (achilles) and Johnny Williams (shoulder).
But head coach Pivac has called on Wales fans not to believe the bookies as they look for a first victory at the Aviva since 2015.
He said: “The boys have trained well in the last week or so – as well as we could expect really.
“So we’re in a pretty good place going into Saturday’s game.
“A lot of the team that won that competition won’t be there in Dublin. But the guys who will be there, we believe will represent us really well.
“Where we are with the bookies, we’re probably in the same position we were last year. We’ve everything to gain and nothing to lose.
“That’s the attitude, going out there and expressing ourselves. Every Six Nations everyone wants to win, and we are no different.
“We want to go out there, and each individual wants to put their best foot forward. They know there’s a lot at stake as defending champions.
“We worked hard to get that title last year, and we’d like to be in a position to try to do that again.
“It means week one we’ve got to work very hard to get a result, and then back that up in week two.”
What time does Ireland vs Wales kick off?
- Ireland vs Wales is the first match of the 2022 Six Nations.
- It takes place on Saturday, February 5.
- Kick-off at the Aviva Stadium is at 2.15pm UK time.
- In last year’s Six Nations, Wales ground out a 21-16 win against the 14 men of Ireland in Cardiff.
What TV channel is Ireland vs Wales on and can I live stream it?
- Ireland vs Wales is live on ITV.
- Coverage commences at 1.30pm – 45 minutes before kick-off.
- To stream the match live, head to the ITV Hub.
- Viewers who want to watch in Welsh can tune into S4C
- Viewers in the Republic of Ireland can watch all the action on RTE 2.
Can I watch Ireland vs Wales for free?
- Yes. ITV is free for all UK viewers with a TV licence.
- Get your TV licence here.
- Andrew Porter
- Ronan Kelleher
- Tadgh Furlong
- Tadgh Beirne
- James Ryan
- Caelan Doris
- Josh Van der Flier
- Jack Conan
- Jamison Gibson Park
- Johnny Sexton
- Mick Hansen
- Bundee Aki
- Gary Ringrose
- Andrew Conway
- Hugo Keenan
- Dan Sheehan
- Cian Healy
- Finlay Bealham
- Ryan Baird
- Peter O’Mahony
- Conor Murray
- Joey Carbery
- James Hume
- Wyn Jones
- Ryan Elias
- Tomas Francis
- Will Rowlands
- Adam Beard
- Ellis Jenkins
- Taine Basham
- Aaron Wainwright
- Tomos Williams
- Dan Biggar (C)
- Louis Rees-Zammit
- Nick Tompkins
- Josh Adams
- Johnny McNicholl
- Liam Williams
16. Dewi Lake
17. Gareth Thomas
18. Dillon Lewis
19. Seb Davies
20. Ross Moriarty
21. Gareth Davies
22. Callum Sheedy
23. Owen Watkin
*Odds from Betfair correct as of Friday, February 4
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