Barbarians name legends to play Wales in epic Alun Wyn Jones farewell match
Wales will take on the Barbarians in November

By Sion Morgan
19:48, 21 SEP 2023

South African World Cup winner Duane Vermeulen and Argentine back row Pablo Matera are among global stars who will go from the Rugby World Cup in France straight into the Barbarians squad being assembled to face Wales, it has been announced. The clash is scheduled for the Principality Stadium on Saturday, November 4 and is set to provide a special send off for Welsh legend Alun Wyn Jones.

They will be joined by another legendary back row man at the home of Welsh rugby in the 125-times capped Australian player Michael Hooper who missed out on the World Cup through injury.

Alun Wyn Jones has already been named as one of the star attractions in the Baa-Baas side for what will be his farewell to the Welsh fans who supported him throughout his record-breaking career of 158 Welsh caps, four tours with the British & Irish Lions and three Grand Slams.

“It’s an honour to wear the famous Black & White jersey of the Baa-Baas, which has created some of the best rugby moments in our game,” said the Barbarians co-coach, Scott Robertson.

“To play a week after one of the best Rugby World Cups ever played, with players from all over the World showing what it means to play for their country, the players will now get to show their class in front of an incredible Principality Stadium crowd against a proud Welsh side.

“Having Alun Wyn Jones, Michael Hooper, Duane Vermeulen and Pablo Matera in the side will create the base of an experienced Barbarians team. It’s a great opportunity to send off some of the greats of the game in front of passionate fans.”

He added: “Alun Wyn will have been the first name on many team sheets for many years and I’m not only looking forward to meeting him and coaching him, but also watching him in his final dance."

Joining Robertson in the Baa-Baas coaching team will be current Australian World Cup coach, Eddie Jones.

“Principality Stadium is one of the best places in the world to play rugby and when you add the passion and fervour of a Welsh crowd and the unique and exciting brand of rugby the Barbarians are famous for, we have a match in prospect that will be the envy of fans around the globe,” said Jones.