Analysis: A world record, Webb’s return and a winless streak – Wales v Scotland talking points

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It might be the only contest being played this weekend, but Scotland v Wales is set to be an engrossing Guinness Six Nations tussle between two teams hungry to finish their campaign with a flourish.

It might be the only contest being played this weekend, but Scotland v Wales is set to be an engrossing Guinness Six Nations tussle between two teams hungry to finish their campaign with a flourish.

Scotland head on the road hoping to end a dry run in Cardiff, having last emerged victorious from the Welsh capital 18 years ago.

So what are the big talking points as we get ready for the Doddie Weir Cup clash?


It seems inevitable that when a Wales team announcement is released, you will see a certain ‘AW Jones (capt)’ appear next to the number five.

Since making his debut in 2006, Alun Wyn Jones has been a mainstay in the squad, and on Saturday the second-rower is set to earn his 148th international cap, equalling New Zealand’s Richie McCaw for the most of all-time.

The record-setting moment will come on his 139th game for Wales, after also accruing nine British & Irish Lions caps.

“Alun Wyn is one of the most iconic figures in the game, he is our leader and I’m delighted for him as he continues to set the bar across the game,” said Wales head coach Wayne Pivac.

There is little Jones has not achieved in rugby and joining McCaw as the most-capped international is a well-deserved honour.

Throughout his career he has partnered numerous locks in the engine room for Wales, but on Saturday he resumes his partnership with Cory Hill, who is set to make his first international start in over a year.


Rhys Webb is set to make his first start in a Wales jersey in almost two and half years at Principality Stadium.

The talented scrum-half last began a Wales game in the No.9 jersey against the All Blacks in November 2017, although he has made two replacement appearances in this year’s Championship.

The 31-year-old from Bridgend is currently on a short-term contract until the end of the season with Bath Rugby, before returning to his boyhood club Ospreys for the 2020/21 campaign.

His controlled cameo against England was impressive, as was his debut for Bath the previous week, and the timing is perfect with Wales in need of a positive injection after falling to three defeats on the bounce. Is Webb the man to put an end to the run?

Sale Sharks prop WillGriff John is also set to make his debut in the final round of the Championship as Pivac aims to boost his pack in the forwards battle.

While Webb is the sole alteration to the back-line, there remains no place for 19-year-old winger Louis Rees-Zammit despite his inclusion in the wider squad.

The Gloucester flyer has been in superb form this season at club level but it looks like he will have to wait for his international debut.


Scotland have endured a torrid time of it in Cardiff in recent decades. They have come up empty-handed on their previous ten visits to the capital, with their last away victory in Wales coming in 2002.

Gregor Townsend started at fly-half for Scotland on that day and is hopeful of ending the Championship with a third successive win having beaten Italy and France in the previous two rounds.

“We set out this season to improve our consistency over a run of five tough games, something we have done well so far,” said Scotland’s head coach.

“We’ve stayed in the fight in every game, which is a credit to how hard the players have worked in training and during the Tests.

“We have huge respect for the Welsh team, who narrowly missed out on a World Cup final a few months ago. They are well coached and have some outstanding players.

“It will be a fantastic occasion and one last opportunity to play to our potential in this Championship.”

And with the backs division remaining the same for a third consecutive match, could they find a way to get rid of their Welsh voodoo? Tune in on Saturday to find out.