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HomeSportRugby-Wales coach Gatland resets side as Wainwright suffers injury blow

Rugby-Wales coach Gatland resets side as Wainwright suffers injury blow

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MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Wales coach Warren Gatland has shifted Taine Plumtree to number eight for Saturday's second test against Australia in Melbourne after star loose forward Aaron Wainwright was ruled out for up to four months with a torn hamstring.

James Botham has been promoted to blindside flanker next to Plumtree, while Mackenzie Martin has been named as back row cover on the bench for the clash at Melbourne Rectangular Stadium.

Wainwright had been a shining light during a bleak run for the Welsh but came off worse for wear in the series-opening 25-16 defeat to the Wallabies in Sydney.

Gatland has also tweaked his back three due to injury, with Liam Williams shifting to the wing to replace Josh Hathaway and Cameron Winnett replacing Williams at fullback.

Hathaway sustained an arm injury in Sydney.

Gatland has otherwise kept faith in the starting side that suffered an eighth straight loss in the series-opener and saw their world ranking slip to 11th, the first time they have ever fallen out of the top 10.

“We expect Australia to go up another level this weekend and we know we need to as well,” Gatland said in a media release.

“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.”

Wales team:

15-Cameron Winnett, 14-Liam Williams, 13-Owen Watkin, 12-Mason Grady, 11-Rio Dyer, 10-Ben Thomas, 9-Ellis Bevan, 8-Taine Plumtree, 7-Tommy Reffell, 6-James Botham, 5-Dafydd Jenkins, 4-Christ Tshiunza, 3-Archie Griffin, 2-Dewi Lake (captain), 1-Gareth Thomas

Replacements: 16-Evan Lloyd, 17-Kemsley Mathias, 18-Harri O’Connor, 19-Cory Hill, 20-Mackenzie Martin, 21-Kieran Hardy, 22-Sam Costelow, 23-Nick Tompkins

(Reporting by Ian Ransom in Melbourne; Editing by Chris Reese)

Disclaimer: This report is auto generated from the Reuters news service. INDIANEXPOSE holds no responsibilty for its content.

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