Dan Biggar to start in an unchanged Wales team against Scotland
By Mike Patterson
Last Updated: 11/02/16 10:09pm
Dan Biggar has been passed fit to start for Wales in Saturday's Six Nations game against Scotland and he will line up in an unchanged team.
Biggar suffered a sprained ankle during last week's 16-16 draw with Ireland in Dublin and limped off after 22 minutes.
There were initial fears the Ospreys back could miss the remainder of the tournament but he has "been working around the clock" this week, according to assistant coach Robin McBryde, and has been cleared to play at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff.
Wales head coach Warren Gatland has made just one change on the bench with Cardiff Blues back Gareth Anscombe, who was ruled out of the Ireland game due to a tight hamstring, replacing Alex Cuthbert.
Rhys Priestland, whose goalkicking helped haul Wales back into the game against Ireland from 13-0 adrift, also features among the replacements after coming on for Biggar at the Aviva Stadium.
Gatland has again selected skipper Sam Warburton at blindside flanker, with Justin Tipuric wearing the No 7 shirt, while Scarlets props Rob Evans and Samson Lee have another opportunity to impress following a strong scrummaging performance against Ireland.
Centre Jonathan Davies wins his 50th cap and lines up alongside midfield partner Jamie Roberts for the 41st time in Tests, with Anscombe offering versatile back division cover off the bench.
"It's great to be able to name an unchanged side, with Dan coming through, fit and ready to play," Gatland said.
"It is a reward for some players who put in a great shift in Dublin, while we will be asking a little more of some of the players as well.
"It's great to see Jonathan reach his 50th cap and continue his impressive international partnership with Jamie in the midfield.
"We were impressed with the impact from the bench last week, and that will be just as vital this weekend in what is going to be a tough battle."
Biggar trained with the Wales squad on Thursday, and Gatland added: "He had to get through today's training.
"He has made a miraculous recovery. The boys were joking and calling him Lazarus and stuff!
"He got through training today and looked sharp. We feared the worst after the game.
"I spoke to the medics, who thought that the injury was a three to five-week injury, but the scan came back clear and he has worked really hard in terms of his recovery."
Captain Sam Warburton added: "He was barking instructions and back to his usual self. It is great that he has made a good recovery - it just shows what a great professional he is.
"A lot of people won't see the late nights on the ice machine and then all the way through the night, probably not stringing together more than two hours' kip at one time, and being with the physios when everyone is having a couple of days off.
"You have got to give him a lot of credit for the way he has worked. If an average person just sat back and didn't really do anything, you would be probably be out for three weeks, but because he is such a diligent professional, he has managed to get back so soon."
Wales have not lost to Scotland since Gatland took charge in 2008, winning eight successive Tests, while the Scots last triumphed in Cardiff 14 years ago.
Wales: 15 Liam Williams, 14 George North, 13 Jonathan Davies, 12 Jamie Roberts, 11 Tom James, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Gareth Davies; 1 Rob Evans, 2 Scott Baldwin, 3 Samson Lee, 4 Luke Charteris, 5 Alun Wyn Jones, 6 Sam Warburton (capt), 7 Justin Tipuric, 8 Taulupe Faletau.
Replacements: 16 Ken Owens, 17 Gethin Jenkins, 18 Tomas Francis, 19 Bradley Davies, 20 Dan Lydiate, 21 Lloyd Williams, 22 Rhys Priestland, 23 Gareth Anscombe.