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Williams and Patchell starting halves for Wales vs Ireland

Backup halves Tomos Williams and Rhys Patchell will start for Wales against Ireland in a completely revamped side for the return Rugby World Cup warmup on Saturday in Dublin.

Ireland beat Wales 22-17 last Saturday in Cardiff in a match between B sides, an audition for their World Cup squads which have since been named.

Scrumhalf Williams and flyhalf Patchell played the second half last weekend. They are backups to regular starters Gareth Davies and Dan Biggar, who are in the reserves. They are surrounded by what is close to Wales' best XV.

Loosehead prop Wyn Jones, hooker Elliot Dee, and flanker Aaron Wainwright have also been given bonus starts, with coach Warren Gatland saying this last warmup was a chance for players to secure starting spots for their first World Cup match on Sept. 23 against Georgia in Toyota, Japan.

The side is different by only five from that which beat England 13-6 in Cardiff in the return match of their series last month.

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Wales: Leigh Halfpenny, George North, Jonathan Davies, Hadleigh Parkes, Josh Adams, Rhys Patchell, Tomos Williams; Ross Moriarty, Justin Tipuric, Aaron Wainwright, Alun Wyn Jones (captain), Jake Ball, Tomas Francis, Elliot Dee, Wyn Jones. Reserves: Ken Owens, Nicky Smith, Dillon Lewis, Adam Beard, Josh Navidi, Gareth Davies, Dan Biggar, Liam Williams.

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More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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