Wales may have lost their 13 international precedents in Australia, but Warren Gatland left three of his senior players on the bench for Saturday's Wallabies test in Cardiff with last summer's co-captains in Argentina .  Mid-Northampton flight Dan Biggar and the Saracen faction Liam Williams, both on tour in New Zealand with Lions last year, were named among the substitutes who lost victory over Scotland because they could not get the exit from their clubs. To them are added Rob Evans and the leaders of Argentina, Cory Hill and Ellis Jenkins, with Gatland who believes that the bench is the key to ending the losing race against Australia.
Josh Adams of Worcester will win the fifth cap on the wing, Gareth Anscombe continues mid-flight, Nicky Smith holds Evans out of the front row and Adam Beard, who is not the first choice for the Ospreys when all their second rows are in shape, keep out of Hill.
"We wanted a little bit of continuity from last week, as well as rewarding players who did well for us in the summer," said Gatland. "We know Liam's skills and this will give us a good chance to watch Josh and while we are aware of Dan's qualities, we did not want to put Gareth on the bench after a game Adam Beard is 6ft 8in and 19st, player of the future who has skills realities in a position where we want to create strength.We want to see how he performs at the next level.I have had sincere conversations with players who have not been selected.It is not about creating media outcry on someone who is not chosen but who builds for the next 10 months.
"We have one of the strongest we have had for a long time. There is a bit of experience and we talked about the importance of the impact of substitutions. Many of the defeats in Australia happened because we were not clinicians in the last few minutes. The game is certainly important in terms of confidence, with Australia the biggest opponents in our world cup next year and we have to manage expectations. "
Since beating Wales 29-21 in Cardiff last year, Australia has lost nine tests of 12 and conceded 42 attempts – Michael Cheika made five changes, one positional, from the side who lost New Zealand to Japan last month.
"I do not read anything in our recent race against Wales," Cheika said. "If you want to find a pattern, you can find one anywhere … Wales has had some consecutive wins [six] and has reached third place in the world.
" I'm in good shape, but this is good as I've seen that we came in Europe in terms of conditioning in the last few years. We are quite hungry after an indifferent season and in the field there is really a good feeling. Everyone trained hard and there was a bit of trouble. I liked it. Warren is one of the best coaches in the world and has a well-trained team. It's a great opportunity to take your scalp. "