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Warburton returns as Wales make three changes for Six Nations battle with Ireland

Gethin Jenkins and Andrew Coombs also comes into the side for the game at the Aviva Stadium.

Sam Warburton in action for Wales against Ireland in 2012.
Sam Warburton in action for Wales against Ireland in 2012.
Image: INPHO/James Crombie

WALES CAPTAIN SAM Warburton returns to their starting line-up for next Saturday’s Six Nations clash with Ireland on Saturday.

Warburton, who came off the bench against Italy, last Saturday has been named to start at openside flanker by Welsh coach Warren Gatland.

He is one of three changes made from the Italian match for next Saturday’s game at the Aviva Stadium.

Elsewhere Gethin Jenkins comes into the front-row while Andrew Coombs will partner Alun Wyn Jones in the second row.

Warburton replaces Justin Tipuric and Jenkins comes in for Paul James with both Tipuric and James dropping to the bench. Coombs is drafted in for Luke Charteris, who is ruled out with a hamstring injury.

Elsewhere the Welsh side is unchanged with full-back Leigh Halfpenny set to win his 50th cap. He lines-up in a back three alongside Alex Cuthbert and George North while Scott Williams and Jamie Roberts continue their centre partnership.

The Wales team in full is:

WALES: Leigh Halfpenny (Cardiff Blues); Alex Cuthbert (Cardiff Blues), Scott Williams (Scarlets), Jamie Roberts (Racing Metro), George North (Northampton Saints); Rhys Priestland (Scarlets), Mike Phillips (Racing Metro); Gethin Jenkins (Cardiff Blues), Richard Hibbard (Ospreys), Adam Jones (Ospreys); Andrew Coombs (Newport Gwent Dragons), Alun Wyn Jones (Ospreys); Dan Lydiate (Racing Metro), Sam Warburton (Capt – Cardiff Blues), Taulupe Faletau (Newport Gwent Dragons).

Replacements: Ken Owens (Scarlets), Paul James (Bath Rugby), Rhodri Jones (Scarlets), Jake Ball (Scarlets), Justin Tipuric (Ospreys), Rhys Webb (Ospreys), James Hook (Perpignan), Liam Williams (Scarlets).

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Fintan O'Toole

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