Alun Wyn Jones has been passed fit to start for Wales in Sunday's Six Nations clash with Ireland at the Principality Stadium.
The captain had been sidelined since injuring his knee against Italy in the Autumn Nations Cup. He'll be partnered by the returning Adam Beard in the second row.
Elsewhere, Ospreys flanker Dan Lydiate will start for the first time since 2018.
In the absence of Josh Adams, there's a maiden Six Nations start for Gloucester wing Louis Rees-Zammit. George North will continue in the centre, with Jonathan Davies missing through injury.
Scrum-half Tomos Williams returns to Wayne Pivac's starting XV having missed the autumn campaign through injury. He forms a half-back partnership with Dan Biggar.
Pivac says he had no qualms bout recalling 33-year old Lydiate to the side, "He's a form player in club rugby.
"He's come into the camp and trained well and deserves a start in our opinion," said Pivac.
"He'll bring a lot of experience and he's a hard-nosed player. He's what we need in round one.
"We look at what he's doing in games and we have a lot of stats and footage that we use.
"We talk to people close to the action at the Ospreys, people whose opinion we cherish.
"Everyone has their own opinions from afar, but we also look at what he's doing in training as well. You'll find anyone in this camp would agree he's done very well there and that he's worth his opportunity."
| #OTBAM addresses Welsh Rugby controversy |
After @gergilroy and @EoinSheahan's comments caused a stir in Wales, Ross Harries joined us to give a Welsh take on Sunday's match and to explain why some fans in Wales are feeling a little sensitive 🏴 pic.twitter.com/Rr0DCgWV3D
— Off The Ball (@offtheball) February 5, 2021
Meanwhile, Pivac has also responded to barbs directed Wales' way from the OTB AM studio.
Earlier this week, they were labelled "a rubbish team" that Ireland can "absolutely annihilate" on Sunday.
Naturally, that's gone down like a lead balloon on the other side of the Irish Sea.
But Pivac was playing the comments with a straight bat, telling WalesOnline, "We've been so busy, as you'd expect us to be in the lead up to the first game, that we don't trawl through those comments or see them.
I'm hearing them for the first time but you're always going to get those sorts of discussions either side of the Irish Sea before a game like this.
Really it just adds some spice to it, doesn't it? People are allowed their opinions.
From our point of view, we'll just box on and try to put out a performance that we need to in order to win the game."
Wales team v Ireland:
15. Leigh Halfpenny; 14. Louis Rees-Zammit, 13. George North, 12. Johnny Williams, 11. Hallam Amos; 10. Dan Biggar, 9. Tomos Williams;
1. Wyn Jones, 2. Ken Owens, 3. Tomas Francis; 4. Adam Beard, 5. Alun Wyn Jones (capt); 6. Dan Lydiate, 7. Justin Tipuric, 8. Taulupe Faletau.
16. Elliot Dee, 17. Rhodri Jones, 18. Leon Brown, 19. Will Rowlands, 20. Josh Navidi, 21. Gareth Davies, 22. Callum Sheedy, 23. Nick Tompkins.
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