Warren Gatland’s decision to rest a number of stalwarts means there are first-team spots up for grabs in Wales’ summer Tests against South Africa and Argentina.
Cory Hill and Ellis Jenkins, who have just ten international starts between them, will co-captain the side, with British & Irish Lions Alun Wyn Jones, Taulupe Faletau and Liam Williams all given the summer off.
Gatland will be hoping to build on Wales’ strong second-place finish in this year’s NatWest 6 Nations and throughout the squad there are players who will be hungry to shine and stake a claim for a starting role long-term.
We have picked out three players to watch on Wales’ summer tour in Washington and Argentina.
Jenkins captained Cardiff Blues to European Challenge Cup glory earlier this month in the absence of his namesake, Gethin, ruled out of the final with a calf injury.
He has looked comfortable in a leadership role for his club side and there is no reason to suggest he won’t do the same for his country.
The flanker only made one appearance in this year’s Championship, in Wales’ win over Italy, and now has the chance to show Gatland that he can hold down the number seven jersey.
Even in this squad he faces stiff competition for places, with James Davies, Ross Moriarty, Josh Turnbull and Josh Navidi all vying for places, but being entrusted with the captaincy should give him the confidence he needs to thrive.
Wales are hardly short of options at openside but Jenkins was a standout performer in June two years ago on the tour of New Zealand and will look to make an impact once more on a summer tour.
Despite only being 26, North goes into this tour as the most experienced player in the squad with 73 caps to his name.
The winger, who is moving from Northampton Saints to Ospreys, made three NatWest 6 Nations appearances in 2018 and faces stiff competition in the back three following the emergence of Steff Evans at the Scarlets.
North’s record in the Championship is superb though, with 17 tries from 32 appearances since 2011 and the British & Irish Lion is a constant try threat.
Unlike some other experienced Wales performers, North needs game time and will be itching to remind people exactly what he can offer in the red jersey.
Along with Aaron Wainwright, Williams is one of two uncapped players in the Wales squad and he will be understandably excited at the prospect of donning a Wales jersey.
The Blues scrum-half has featured heavily for his club side this season, and scored a remarkable try in the European Challenge Cup final, showing superb footballing skills, to spark a comeback win over Gloucester.
He has played for the Wales Sevens team and the Under-20s in the past, so is no stranger to international rugby, but he will have to fight with Scarlets duo Aled and Gareth Davies for some game time.
A teammate of co-captain Jenkins, Williams is an exciting player to watch and it will be interesting to note how he makes the transition from club to international level.