BRIGHT prospect Ben Carter will make his Wales debut as a starter against Canada after Alun Wyn Jones' injury woe led to a late promotion for the Dragons lock.

The 20-year-old has enjoyed a remarkable rise since making his professional debut as a replacement against Munster at Rodney Parade in November.

Carter, who only left his teens in January, established himself in the Dragons side and racked up 20 appearances to earn a first Test call.

Boss Wayne Pivac initially planned on giving the bright prospect a cameo against Canada but that changed when Jones was injured playing for the Lions against Japan on Saturday.

Adam Beard, who had been pencilled in for the start in Cardiff, replaced the skipper in the squad to face the Springboks and that has led to Carter landing a starting role at Principality Stadium alongside Dragons-bound Will Rowlands.

South Wales Argus:

"I like the Will Rowlands and Adam Beard combination - two huge men - but that's not going to happen for the time being," said Pivac.

"Ben was always going to be involved in the first game, we wanted to test him and that was originally going to be off the bench.

"He has been training right from day one with the group and gets an opportunity to start. I am excited for him because he will learn even more and get a little bit more responsibility.

"Both of those guys starting will have an opportunity to put their hands up for what will be a very tough series against Argentina."

The Dragons have six starters with Carter and Rowlands joined by hooker Elliot Dee, back row forwards Ross Moriarty and Aaron Wainwright and in-form wing Jonah Holmes.

There is set to be a new regional record of eight players featuring with tighthead Leon Brown and flanker Taine Basham coming off the bench.

South Wales Argus:

Basham was named by Pivac in his first Wales squad two years ago but is set for his international debut after finishing the season strongly, working back to top form after suffering a fractured forearm at the Scarlets in January.

"Taine is very dynamic. He has been in fits and starts in training, so needs to get his fitness up after coming back from injury," said Pivac.

"Taine has worked his way back into the game off the bench for the Dragons and just has to keep working hard.

"He is dynamic with a great skill set to go with the power that he possesses. I love him on the ball, he can offer us something in the wider channels and help us get over the gain line. He will get a good chunk of game time."

The Dragons had a six-strong contingent in the 2005 win against Italy in Rome when wing Hal Luscombe and Michael Owen started with Kevin Morgan, Ceri Sweeney, Gareth Cooper and Ian Gough among the replacements.

l Team news: Page 28