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Parkes among five uncapped players in Wales squad for autumn tests

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Parkes among five uncapped players in Wales squad for autumn tests

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(Reuters) – New Zealand-born centre Hadleigh Parkes is one of five uncapped players named in Wales coach Warren Gatland’s 36-man squad for the Autumn internationals against Australia, Georgia, New Zealand and South Africa. The 30-year-old will only become available to represent Wales under the three-year residency rule in time for the final test against South Africa on Dec. 2. “I’m really excited about this squad as we kick off the two year countdown to the 2019 Rugby World Cup,” Gatland said in a statement on Tuesday. “We see this series as an opportunity to expose some players to the test environment and continue to build our game as we look ahead to (the World Cup in) two years time.” Gatland also recalled flyhalf Rhys Priestland who has made a strong start to the season with his English club Bath. Several regulars were left out including experienced centre Jamie Roberts and lock Luke Charteris. Flanker Ross Moriarty and prop Gethin Jenkins are injured. “The important message for those players who have missed out, the door isn’t closed,” Gatland added.

Forwards: Nicky Smith, Rob Evans, Wyn Jones, Tomas Francis, Samson Lee, Leon Brown, Kristian Dacey, Ken Owens, Elliot Dee, Jake Ball, Alun Wyn Jones, Seb Davies, Adam Beard, Cory Hill, Justin Tipuric, Sam Cross, Dan Lydiate, Taulupe Faletau, Aaron Shingler, Josh Navidi Backs: Gareth Davies, Rhys Webb, Aled Davies, Dan Biggar, Rhys Patchell, Rhys Priestland, Owen Williams, Hadleigh Parkes, Owen Watkin, Jonathan Davies, Tyler Morgan, Alex Cuthbert, Steffan Evans, Hallam Amos, Liam Williams, Leigh Halfpenny. (Compiled by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru, editing by Ed Osmond)
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