17 Mar 2010

Prydie will become youngest to play rugby for Wales

6:05 am on 17 March 2010

Tom Prydie will become Wales' youngest international when the 18-year-old wing turns out for their closing Six Nations rugby match against Italy in Cardiff this weekend.

The Ospreys man, who will also be the youngest player to feature in the tournament just 27 days after his birthday, replaces Leigh Halfpenny in one of five changes made to the starting line-up after last weekend's 27-12 defeat by Ireland.

Wales' previous youngest international was wing Norman Biggs, capped in 1888 at 18 years and 50 days.

The youngest player in the Six Nations until now was England's Mathew Tait, who featured two days before his 19th birthday.

Ryan Jones is reinstated as captain after missing the Ireland match with a calf injury while Gethin Jenkins, Mike Phillips and Sam Warburton are brought in.

Jenkins replaces Osprey Paul James, who is on the bench, with Wales reuniting their all-Lions front row for the first time since the 2009 Test series against South Africa.

Phillips takes over from Richie Rees, with Dwayne Peel keeping his place on the bench to provide scrumhalf cover.

Warburton was chosen ahead of Martyn Williams in the back row and Jones replaces Gloucester's Gareth Delve.

Wales and Italy have each won one of their four matches in this year's championship and are out of the running for the title. Leaders France, with eight points, are going for a grand slam, while defending champions Ireland are second on six.