Jamie Roberts back for the Dove Men Series

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Jamie Roberts during the Cardiff Blues recent trip to South Africa. Photo by Morgan Piek /Rugby15.

Rob Howley has named a 35-man Wales squad to contest the 2012 Dove Men Series at the Millennium Stadium this autumn which includes just one uncapped player and the returning Jamie Roberts.

Howley, Wales’ interim head coach in the absence of Warren Gatland, has selected six players who did not figure in his original 34-man summer tour squad to Australia, including talismanic Blues centre Roberts, with Ospreys tight-head prop Aaron Jarvis the only potential debutant.

Jarvis is one of six props named – only five travelled down under in the summer,  which accounts for the larger contingent this time – with fellow Osprey Ryan Bevington and Blues front row Scott Andrews recalled to join incumbents Adam Jones (Ospreys), Gethin Jenkins (Toulon) and Paul James (Bath).

Scarlets pair Rob McCusker (flanker) and Tavis Knoyle (scrum half) both also return to the fold alongside Ospreys fly-half Dan Biggar, whilst Blues flanker Sam Warburton is retained as captain.

Knoyle returns in place of Ospreys scrum half Rhys Webb and Biggar alongside Roberts completes the 15-man backs contingent with Aled Brew (Biarritz Olympique) and Andrew Bishop (Ospreys) the players missing out.

Scarlets prop Rhodri Jones (shoulder), Exeter Chiefs prop Craig Mitchell (bicep) and Dragons back row Dan Lydiate (ankle) were unavailable due to injury.

Wales begin their campaign against Argentina on Saturday, 10 November, before facing Samoa the following Friday evening.

The arrival of New Zealand in Cardiff ahead of their clash with Wales on Saturday,  24 November will coincide with Gatland’s return to the national squad coaching staff.

He re-joins the squad for the clash with the All Blacks and to see them face the Wallabies in the series climax on 1 December, before returning to British & Irish Lions duties and leaving Howley in full charge once again for the 2013 RBS 6 Nations Championship.

“We are really pleased with the strength and depth of the squad with some pleasing individual performances over the last three or four weeks, but we all understand and realize the skill, physicality and intensity will go up over the next five weeks,” said Howley.

“This is one of the reasons we are going back to our training camp in Poland to sharpen minds and bodies.

“Argentina are first up and after the experience they have gained in the Rugby Championship they will be a challenging and tough opponent, but this is a challenge we will look forward too.

“We know how important momentum is going into any series and the bigger picture is the Rugby World Cup draw at the beginning of December and how we perform against the Pumas, Samoa, the All Blacks and the Wallabies will have a direct effect on our seeding in that draw.

“We need a successful November to back up our performances at the RWC in New Zealand and the Six Nations Grand Slam earlier this year and we are determined to achieve it.”

The Wales squad will begin their preparations for the Dove Men Series with a week’s training camp in Spala, Poland, beginning this Sunday, 28 October – the same Olympic training village which they visited prior to the 2011 RWC.

WALES FIXTURES STILL ON SALE:

10 November 2012, Millennium Stadium – WALES v ARGENTINA.
16 November 2012, Millennium Stadium – WALES v SAMOA.
1 December 2012, Millennium Stadium – WALES v AUSTRALIA.

WALES SQUAD, DOVE MEN SERIES 2012

Leigh HALFPENNY (CARDIFF BLUES – Cap No 1,060)

DoB: 22.12.88. 5’10” / 1.77m. 13st 6lbs / 85kgs

International record: 35 caps (W 17, L 18; 182 pts – 11T, 11C, 35PG)

Liam WILLIAMS (SCARLETS – Cap No 1,095)

DoB: 09.04.91. 6’2” / 1.88m. 13st 6lbs / 86kgs

International record: 1 cap (W 1)

Alex CUTHBERT (CARDIFF BLUES – Cap No 1,089)

DoB: 05.04.90. 6’6” / 1.98m. 16st 3lbs / 103kgs

International record: 9 caps (W 5, L 4; 20 pts – 4T)

George NORTH (SCARLETS – Cap No 1,078)

DoB: 13.04.92. 6’4” / 1.92m. 17st 3lbs / 109kgs

International record: 24 caps (W 11, L 12, D 1; 55 pts – 11T)

Harry ROBINSON (CARDIFF BLUES – Cap No 1,094)

DoB: 16.04.93. 5’10” / 1.78m. 12st 13lbs / 82kgs

International record: 1 cap (W 1; 5 pts – 1T)

Ashley BECK (OSPREYS – Cap No 1,097)

DoB: 15.04.90. 6’3” / 1.91m. 15st 13lbs / 101kgs

International record: 3 caps (L 3)

Jonathan DAVIES (SCARLETS – Cap No 1,066)

DoB:05.04.88. 6’1” / 1.86m. 16st 8lb / 105kgs

International record: 29 caps (W 16, L 13; 40 pts – 8T)

Jamie ROBERTS (CARDIFF BLUES – Cap No 1,057)

DoB: 08.11.86. 6’4” / 1.93m. 17st 5lbs / 110kgs

International record: 44 caps (W 23, L 21; 25 pts – 5T)

Scott WILLIAMS (SCARLETS – Cap No 1,084)

DoB: 10.10.90. 6’0” / 1.83m. 15st 13lbs / 101kgs

International record: 14 caps (W 8, L 6; 25 pts – 5T)

Dan BIGGAR (OSPREYS – Cap No 1,063)

DoB: 16.10.89. 6’2” / 1.88m. 14st 1lbs / 89kgs

International record: 10 caps (W 5, L 4, D 1; 54 pts – 9C, 12PG)

James HOOK (PERPIGNAN – Cap No 1,047)

DoB: 27.06.85. 6’0” / 1.83m. 15st 2lbs / 96kgs

International record: 65 caps (W 29, L 34, D 2; 346 pts – 13T, 43C, 61PG, 4DG)

Rhys PRIESTLAND (SCARLETS – Cap No 1,080)

DoB: 09.01.87 1.82m / 6’0”. 15st 0lbs / 95kgs

International record: 18 caps (W 11, L 7; 53 pts – 1T, 12C, 8PG)

Tavis KNOYLE (SCARLETS – Cap No 1,076)

DoB: 02.06.90. 6’1” / 1.85m. 14st 5lbs / 91kgs

International record: 7 caps (W 3, L 4)

Mike PHILLIPS (BAYONNE – Cap No 1,022)

DoB: 29.08.82. 6’3” / 1.91m. 15st 10lb / 101kgs

International record: 68 caps (W 33, L 33, D 2; 40 pts – 8T)

Lloyd WILLIAMS (CARDIFF BLUES – Cap No 1,086)

DoB: 30.11.89. 6’0” / 1.83m. 14st 1lb / 89kgs

International record: 8 caps (W 6, L 2; 10 pts – 2T)

Scott ANDREWS (CARDIFF BLUES – Cap No 1,083)

DoB: 01.08.89. 6’2” / 1.88m. 18st 7lbs / 117kgs

International record: 2 caps (L 2)

Ryan BEVINGTON (OSPREYS – Cap No 1,081)

DoB: 9.12.88. 6’0”/1.82m. 17st 10lbs / 112kgs

International record: 7 caps (W 3, L 4)

Paul JAMES (BATH RUGBY – Cap No 1,021)

DoB: 13.05.82. 6’1” / 1.86m. 18st 2lbs / 115kgs

International record: 37 caps (W 16, L 20, D 1)

Aaron JARVIS (OSRPEYS – Uncapped)

DoB: 20.05.86. 6’0” / 1.83m. / 18st 7lbs 117kgs

International record: Uncapped

Gethin JENKINS (TOULON – Cap No 1,006)

DoB: 17.11.80. 6’2” / 1.88m. 19st 1lb / 121kgs

International record: 90 caps (W 41, L 47, D 2; 20 pts – 4T)

Adam JONES (OSPREYS – Cap No 1,018)

DoB: 08.03.81. 6’0” / 1.83m. 19st 4lbs / 122kgs

International record: 83 caps (W 40, L 40, D 3; 10 pts – 2T)

Richard HIBBARD (OSPREYS – Cap No 1,048)

DoB: 13.12.83. 6’0” / 1.83m. 17st 5lbs / 110kgs

International record: 17 caps (W 8, L 9)

Ken OWENS (SCARLETS – Cap No 1,088)

DoB: 03.01.87. 6’1” / 1.86m. 17st 3lbs / 109kgs

International record: 7 caps (W 5, L 2)

Matthew REES (SCARLETS – Cap No 1,033)

DoB: 09.12.80. 6’0” / 1.83m. 17st 1lbs / 108kgs

International record: 54 caps (W 23, L 30, D 1; 10 pts – 2T)

Bradley DAVIES (CARDIFF BLUES – Cap No 1,065)

DoB: 09.01.87. 6’6” / 1.98m. 19st 4lbs / 122kgs

International record: 36 caps (W 15, L 20, D 1)

Luke CHARTERIS (PERPIGNAN – Cap No 1,030)

DoB: 09.03.83. 6’9” / 2.06m. 19st 10lbs / 125kgs

International record: 37 caps (W 18, L 19)

Ian EVANS (OSPREYS – Cap No 1,045)

DoB: 04.10.84. 6’8” / 2.04m. 18st 3lbs / 116kgs

International record: 23 caps (W 12, L 10, D 1; 5 pts – 1T)

Alun Wyn JONES (OSPREYS – Cap No 1,046)

DoB: 19.09.85. 6’5” / 1.96m. 19st 4lbs / 122kgs

International record: 66 caps (W 29, L 37; 35 pts – 7T)

Toby FALETAU (NEWPORT GWENT DRAGONS – Cap No 1,082)

DoB: 12.11.90. 1.87m / 6’2”. 17st 5lbs / 110kgs

International record: 17 caps (W 10, L 7 – 2T)

Ryan JONES (OSPREYS – Cap No 1,029)

DoB: 13.03.81. 6’5” / 1.96m. 17st 12lbs / 113kgs

International record: 67 caps (W 34, L 31, D 2; 10 pts – 2T)

Rob McCUSKER (SCARLETS – Cap No 1,075)

DoB: 10.12.85. 1.95m / 6’4”. 15st 11lbs / 100kgs

International record: 4 caps (L 4)

Aaron SHINGLER (SCARLETS – Cap No 1,090)

DoB: 07.08.87. 1.96m / 6’5”. 16st 8lbs / 105kgs

International record: 2 caps (W 2)

Justin TIPURIC (OSPREYS – Cap No 1,087)

DoB: 06.08.89. 1.88m / 6’2” 15st 13lbs / 101kgs

International record: 6 caps (W 4, L 2)

Josh TURNBULL (SCARLETS – Cap No 1,079)

DoB: 12.03.88. 1.93m / 6’4”. 15st 8lbs / 99kgs

International record: 4 caps (W 3, L 1)

Sam WARBURTON (CARDIFF BLUES, CAPTAIN – Cap No 1,070)

DoB: 05.10.88. 1.88m / 6’2”. 16st 4lbs / 103kgs

International record: 30 caps (W 15, L 15; 10 pts – 2T)

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