Rugby World Cup: Wales make four changes for New Zealand quarter-final


Keira Bevan was a second-half substitute in all three pool games, scoring a terrific last-gasp goal in the win against Scotland.
Place: Northland Events Centre, Whangarei Date: October 29, Saturday Start: 07:30 BST
Coverage: Additional live BBC Radio Wales commentary on the BBC Sport website and app and live text commentary on the BBC Sport website and app

Wales have made four changes for their Rugby World Cup quarter-final against defending champions New Zealand.

Scrum-half Keira Bevan and wing Lowri Norkett make their first starts of the tournament, switching to full-back Jasmine Joyce.

Prop Donna Rose returns from a week’s layoff, while Carys Phillips is preferred at hooker.

New Zealand have named a strong side with Stacey Fluhler, Ruby Tui and Portia Woodman in the XV.

The two sides met in the second round of the pool stage, the Black Ferns He scored 10 tries in the 56-12 victory.

New Zealand have gained three points after finishing in first place, while Wales are eighth with just one win over Scotland.

Bevan was Wales’ hero in that game after scoring an 84th-minute penalty, and has won the number nine jersey from Ffion Lewis.

Hannah Jones captains Wales for the third time in the tournament, with team captain Siwan Lillicrap on the bench alongside props Gwenllian Pyrs and Lleucu George, both set to make their competitive debuts.

As well as bringing in world-class backs, the Black Ferns return to the half-back partnership of Kendra Cocksedge and Ruahei Demant, with Chelsea Bremner returning to the backline.

Captain Kennedy Simon is back from injury and will make his World Cup debut off the bench.

Wales manager Ioan Cunningham said: “We have a tough task on Saturday when we face the Black Ferns on their home patch. They are in good form, scoring a lot of points and playing well.

“However, we have nothing to lose, we intend to go out and leave everything on the field.

“In the pool game we had some dominance against them, but we created quite a few chances, many of which we didn’t convert.”

New Zealand assistant coach Wesley Clarkehe said: “We’re going to get some good mauls and scrums where they really challenged us last time, so that’s good.

“There were a lot of things that weren’t up to our standards in our last game, so we’ve focused on this week.”

New Zealand: Ruby Water; Portia Woodman, Stacey Fluhler, Theresa Fitzpatrick, Ayesha Leti-I’iga; Ruahei Demant (capt), Kendra Cocksedge; Phillipa Love, Georgia Ponsonby, Amy Rule, Sister Roos, Chelsea Bremner, Alana Bremner, Sarah Hirini, Liana Michael-Tu’u

Replacements: Luke Connor, Krystal Murray, St. Thomas, Joanah Ngan-Woo, Kennedy Simon, Ariana Bayler, Hazel Tubic, Renee Holmes

Wales: Jasmine Joyce; Lowri Norkett, Carys Williams-Morris, Hannah Jones (captain), Lisa Neumann; Elinor Snowsill, Keira Bevan; Cara Hope, Carys Phillips, Donna Rose, Natalia John, Gwen Crabb, Bethan Lewis, Alex Callender, Sioned Harries

Replacements: Kelsey Jones, Gwenllian Pyrs, Sisilia Tuipulotu, Georgia Evans, Siwan Lillicrap, Ffion Lewis, Lleucu George, Meg Webb.

Judge: Aimee Barrett-Theron (SARU)

Assistant referees: Aurélie Groizeleau (FFR) and Julianne Zussman (RC)

TMO: Chris Assmus (RC)