Star man out of second Test as Gatland expects Wallabies to ‘go up a level’

Star man out of second Test as Gatland expects Wallabies to 'go up a level'

Wales have been dealt a blow ahead of the second Test against the Wallabies with star No.8 Aaron Wainwright ruled out with a hamstring injury.

Wainwright, the visitors’ best player in the opening 25-16 loss to Australia in Sydney, is replaced by Taine Plumtree, who moves from flanker.

Winger Josh Hathaway also misses out due to an elbow injury.

James Botham moves into the starting side at No.6 to fill Plumtree’s role at six, with Mackenzie Martin coming in as back-row cover on the bench.

Liam Williams moves to the wing with Cameron Winnett coming in at full-back.

Gareth Thomas has been cleared to start in the front-row – with Wales naming an unchanged front-five from last week.

In a statement coach Warren Gatland said: “This week we’ve been going through our processes, building on what worked well and sharpening the areas that need improvement.

“We expect Australia to go up another level this weekend and we know we need to as well.

“We want to start well and make sure we are disciplined and accurate from the off. Then it’s about keeping in the arm-wrestle for the duration.”

Australia is expected to name their team at midday Thursday.

Wales team

1. Gareth Thomas (Ospreys / Gweilch – 32 caps)

2. Dewi Lake (Ospreys / Gweilch – 14 caps) (captain)

3. Archie Griffin (Bath Rugby / Caerfaddon – 2 caps)

4. Christ Tshiunza (Exeter Chiefs / Caerwysg – 11 caps)

5. Dafydd Jenkins (Exeter Chiefs / Caerwysg – 18 caps)

6. James Botham (Cardiff Rugby / Caerdydd – 12 caps)

7. Tommy Reffell (Leicester Tigers / Caerlŷr – 19 caps)

8. Taine Plumtree (Scarlets – 4 caps)

9. Ellis Bevan (Cardiff Rugby / Caerdydd – 2 caps)

10. Ben Thomas (Cardiff Rugby / Caerdydd – 3 caps)

11. Rio Dyer (Dragons / Dreigiau – 21 caps)

12. Mason Grady (Cardiff Rugby / Caerdydd – 13 caps)

13. Owen Watkin (Ospreys / Gweilch – 40 caps)

14. Liam Williams (Kubota Spears – 91 caps)

15. Cameron Winnett (Cardiff Rugby / Caerdydd – 6 caps)

16. Evan Lloyd (Cardiff Rugby / Caerdydd – 4 caps)

17. Kemsley Mathias (Scarlets – 4 caps)

18. Harri O’Connor (Scarlets – 3 caps)

19. Cory Hill (Secom Rugguts – 33 caps)

20. Mackenzie Martin (Cardiff Rugby / Caerdydd – 4 caps)

21. Kieran Hardy (Ospreys / Gweilch – 22 caps)

22. Sam Costelow (Scarlets – 14 caps)

23. Nick Tompkins (Saracens / Saraseniaid – 37 caps)

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