Brynmor Williams' analysis
Italy v Wales
It was unsatisfactory to say the least, wasn’t it? The play was awkward and the pack were weak compared to the Italian forwards. Basically, there were too many changes. I can understand that Gatland wants to develop the squad but I don’t think that this is the time, in the middle of the Championship. We should’ve gone to Rome and given them a thrashing, to be completely honest. But it may benefit us to head into the Irish game as underdogs – who knows, it may give the boys an extra boost.
Wales v Ireland team announcement
It's not too much of a surprise that Warren Gatland has made so many changes to face Ireland, who are looking for a Grand Slam title in Cardiff on Saturday.
Gatland is a big fan of Gavin Henson and likes his style of play so his inclusion is no surprise. I agree that Henson is very talented but it's about time that he started to prove himself and justify the decision.
The experienced partnership of Henson and Shanklin also returns and looks very promising, with both playing side-by-side during the 2005 and 2008 Grand Slams. But for them to have any effect on the game, they need to win possession - the pack have added pressure to supply this for them.
I am rather surprised at Leigh Halfpenny's exclusion from the squad - he's a flexible player, but maybe Gatland think he lacks the experience at this level.
Jonathan Thomas hasn't had much game time in recent months and this is probably the reason behind the decision not to play him on Saturday. I do think he's a talented player, injuries have been cruel to him recently.
Wales v Ireland
I'm confident that we'll win on Saturday - we have the ability to cause an Irish upset. We experienced shocks against the English and the French, but I think that we have a very strong squad on paper who have the experience to beat O'Driscoll and his team.