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Last Updated: Tuesday, 12 February 2008, 12:37 GMT
Jones and Peel earn Wales start
Stephen Jones on the charge against Scotland
Stephen Jones takes over from James Hook at fly-half against Italy
Warren Gatland has changed his starting half-back pairing for Wales' Six Nations clash with Italy, with Stephen Jones and Dwayne Peel getting the nod.

James Hook and Mike Phillips, who started the win over Scotland, drop to the bench as part of six changes.

Gatland has also named a whole new front row, with Gethin Jenkins, Rhys Thomas and hooker Matthew Rees given their first starts of the championship.

The other change is on the wing where Mark Jones returns for Jamie Roberts.

Roberts made his Test debut on Saturday in the 30-15 win against Scotland, but makes way for Scarlets wing Jones who started in Wales' previous victory against England.


There is no place for Roberts on the bench, as Sonny Parker provides cover in the three-quarters.

Jones and Peel have been rewarded for their performances off the bench at the weekend, when they came on with 22 minutes remaining and guided Wales to victory.

As a result, Hook and Phillips have been included among the replacements, alongside hooker Huw Bennett and prop Duncan Jones who also started against Scotland.

Gatland has taken the bold step of changing his entire front row against an Azzurri side renowned for their forward power.

But the rest of the pack remain unchanged after lock Alun Wyn Jones failed to recover from the ankle injury that kept him out of the Scotland game.

In the backs, Tom Shanklin will become the 20th Welsh player to win 50 caps and will continue his midfield partnership with Gavin Henson.

Wales' opening victories over England and Scotland has set up a shot at the Triple Crown, when they travel to Ireland in a month's time.

But before then they must see off Italy at the Millennium Stadium on 23 February.

Wales: Lee Byrne (Ospreys); Mark Jones (Llanelli Scarlets), Tom Shanklin (Cardiff Blues), Gavin Henson (Ospreys), Shane Williams (Ospreys); Stephen Jones (Llanelli Scarlets), Dwayne Peel (Llanelli Scarlets); Gethin Jenkins (Cardiff Blues), Matthew Rees (Llanelli Scarlets), Rhys Thomas (Newport Gwent Dragons), Ian Gough (Ospreys), Ian Evans (Ospreys), Jonathan Thomas (Ospreys), Martyn Williams (Cardiff Blues), Ryan Jones (Ospreys, capt).
Replacements: Huw Bennett (Ospreys), Duncan Jones (Ospreys), Deiniol Jones (Cardiff Blues), Gareth Delve (Gloucester), Mike Phillips (Ospreys), James Hook (Ospreys), Sonny Parker (Ospreys).

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