Wales make four changes for New Zealand World Cup clash
Wales head coach Ioan Cunningham has made four changes to his starting line-up for the World Cup clash against New Zealand on Sunday.
Wales name an unchanged backline for Sunday’s game, while up front, Bethan Lewis, Siwan Lillicrap, Gwen Crabb and Kelsey Jones come into the forward pack.
Lillicrap is also resuming the captaincy of the side with Hannah Jones vice-captain.
Flanker Alisha Butchers suffered what the Welsh Rugby Union described as a “significant” knee injury” in the opener against Scotland and will miss the rest of the tournament
Cunningham’s side got off to a winning start in the game against Scotland last weekend, as Keira Bevan kept her nerve to clinch a last-gasp victory.
Bevan kicked a penalty on the stroke of full-time to seal an 18 -15 win moments after Scotland missed their own chance to take the points.
Cunningham has challenged his players to “grab the opportunity with both hands” against the current world champions.
“As a squad we have spoken about embracing this challenge,” he said.
“It’s a great opportunity to express ourselves. We’re playing New Zealand in their home world cup, we’re both on the back of wins, so it’s all about this game now.
“We have nothing to lose but you have to be brave against any New Zealand team, you have to go for it, score tries, we can’t hold back, we have to go for it. Australia showed you can create opportunities and we need to do that too.”
“We started well against Scotland, scored two tries up but created more scoring opportunities, we probably left two tries out there,” he added.
“If we can take more of those opportunities, we’ll be in a much better place come Sunday evening.”
Wales team v New Zealand: 15 Kayleigh Powell 14 Jasmine Joyce 13 Megan Webb 12 Hannah Jones 11 Lisa Neumann 10 Elinor Snowsill 9 Ffion Lewis 1 Cara Hope 2 Kelsey Jones 3 Donna Rose 4 Natalia John 5 Siwan Lillicrap (capt) 6 Gwen Crabb 7 Bethan Lewis 8 Sioned Harries
Replacements: 16 Kat Evans 17 Caryl Thomas 18 Sisilia Tuipulotu 19 Abbie Fleming 20 Alex Callender 21 Keira Bevan 22 Robyn Wilkins 23 Kerin Lake
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