Wales to hold trial match ahead of tour to South Africa
Last Updated: 08/05/14 4:33pm
Rob Howley: Will coach the Probables against the Possibles in Swansea
The Wales squad for the summer tour of South Africa will be decided following a rare trial match at the end of the month.
The Welsh Rugby Union has announced a first full-blown trial match in 14 years ahead of the two-Test series against the Springboks in June.
The Probables, coached by Rob Howley, will take on Robin McBryde's Possibles at the Liberty Stadium in Swansea on May 30.
Howley's coaching team will include Shaun Edwards and current Scarlets forwards specialist Danny Wilson, while Neil Jenkins and Dale McIntosh will assist McBryde.
Wales head coach Warren Gatland will then unveil his 31-man squad for the tour to South Africa immediately following the trial.
"It's great that we are able to resurrect the famous Wales trial," Gatland said.
"It's a good opportunity for the players, but it's also important for us in our short-term as well as long-term preparation.
"The trial will enable us to work with the extended squad and see those players in our environment as preparations ramp up for next year's World Cup.
"It's a chance for players to experience the set-up and round off a week's training with us in a meaningful match and hopefully put their hand up for this summer's tour.
"We will be announcing the squad to travel to South Africa after the game, so it's a great opportunity for players to book their seat on the plane.
"The tour itself is going to be extremely tough, and the game will be important in ensuring we don't head into it cold.
"The majority of the squad would not have played for four or five weeks, and we need to hit the ground running.
"The Springboks are immersed in Super Rugby right up to the tour, and then have a game against a World XV the week before the first Test, so they certainly won't be undercooked."
The squads for the Probables and Possibles will be unveiled next Tuesday, with Wales facing South Africa in Durban on June 14, and then Nelspruit seven days later.