Six Nations 2014: Jonathan Davies recalled by Wales for Test against England
The sides meet at Twickenham on Saturday
Wednesday 05 March 2014
Wales boss Warren Gatland has recalled centre Jonathan Davies after a four-month absence from Test rugby for next Sunday's RBS 6 Nations clash against title rivals England at Twickenham.
Davies has seen just 105 minutes of competitive action for the Scarlets since suffering a torn pectoral muscle during Wales' opening autumn series defeat by South Africa on November 9.
But the 25-year-old, a star performer in the British and Irish Lions' Test series triumph against Australia last summer, returns to resume his powerful midfield partnership with Jamie Roberts.
With Davies back, George North, who deputised in the number 13 shirt against France last month, reverts to his familiar wing position, with Liam Williams dropping out.
One other change sees fit-again lock Alun-Wyn Jones take over from Jake Ball.
Scarlets pair Williams and Ball are both on the bench, along with Mike Phillips as Rhys Webb retains scrum-half duties after impressing on his first Wales start when France were crushed 27-6.
Jones, meanwhile, missed the France encounter due to a foot infection, but he has now fully recovered.
Gatland's line-up contains 11 of the team that ended England's Grand Slam hopes by a record 30-3 margin in Cardiff last season, with Webb, fly-half Rhys Priestland, lock Luke Charteris and flanker Dan Lydiate the only players involved this time who did not start that game.
And there are nine members of the Gatland-coached Lions third Test team that destroyed Australia in Sydney last July to claim a first series triumph since 1997.
Reflecting on his selection for Twickenham, Gatland said: "It's great to have both Jon and Alun-Wyn back and available, and they come into a very experienced side.
"Jon came through the match well at the weekend (against Munster) and he is ready to go.
"We were happy with the response and performance against France, but we know we will have to raise it another level on Sunday.
"We are really looking forward to going up to Twickenham. England have performed well so far, and it is set up to be a great game with all to play for."
Four teams - Ireland, England, Wales and France - are currently locked on four points at the top of the Six Nations table.
Ireland's superior points difference means they are favourites to lift the title, although their final game on Match 15 is against France in Paris.
The losers at Twickenham will effectively be out of title contention, which further raises the stakes for the 125th meeting between two fierce rivals. The countries are currently locked on 56 wins each, with 12 draws.
England head coach Stuart Lancaster is due to name his starting XV on Friday.
Wales team to play England in the RBS 6 Nations Championship at Twickenham on Sunday.
L Halfpenny (Cardiff Blues); A Cuthbert (Cardiff Blues), J Davies (Scarlets), J Roberts (Racing Metro), G North (Northampton); R Priestland (Scarlets), R Webb (Ospreys); G Jenkins (Cardiff Blues), R Hibbard (Ospreys), A Jones (Ospreys), L Charteris (Perpignan), A-W Jones (Ospreys), D Lydiate (Racing Metro), S Warburton (Cardiff Blues, capt), T Faletau (Newport Gwent Dragons).
Replacements: K Owens (Scarlets), P James (Bath), R Jones (Scarlets), J Ball (Scarlets), J Tipuric (Ospreys), M Phillips (Racing Metro), D Biggar (Ospreys), L Williams (Scarlets).
Manchester City vs Manchester United combined XI: No place for Yaya Toure... or any United defenders
Sami Khedira transfer news: Arsenal can win the Premier League if they sign Khedira in January, says Perry Groves
Paul Scholes: At last! Some credit for Sam Allardyce
Chelsea injury list: Diego Costa and Loic Remy lead the Blues' absent players
Radamel Falcao: Manchester United ready to seal permanent transfer of striker as 'everything is complete' to extend his Old Trafford stay
- 1 'Nasa Confirms Six Days of Darkness in December': No, they don't - it's a hoax
- 2 Canadian actor punched in face after 'Islamophobia' experiment goes wrong in wake of Ottawa shooting
- 3 Topshop at centre of row over body image as 'shocking' skinny mannequin photo goes viral
- 4 If you think Russell Brand’s new book is confused, you should read what his critics have to say about it
- 5 Kentucky gang rape: 15-year-old boy left in critical condition after sexual attack by group at party
Pope Francis declares evolution and Big Bang theory are real and God is not 'a magician with a magic wand'
Huge surge in Ukip support after EU funding row, according to new poll
Ukip ‘exploiting grooming scandal’ to secure party’s first police chief
Nigel Farage: 'There’s nothing wrong with white people blacking up'
Maureen Lipman says 'she can't vote Labour while Ed Miliband is leader'
Muslims, immigration and teenage pregnancy: British people are ignorant about almost everything