Hook on the move again for Wales as injured Davies looks set to miss Italy clash

Versatile: Hook goes to centre

Versatile: Hook goes to centre

James Hook will start in his third different position of this year's RBS 6 Nations Championship when Wales face Italy on Saturday.

Hook, full-back against England and then fly-half when Wales beat Scotland 10 days ago, moves to centre as replacement for the injured Jonathan Davies.

Davies was injured against Scotland last week when Hook inspired a 24-6 win from fly-half, having started at full-back in the 26-19 loss to England.

Wales had hoped to name an unchanged team for the match in Rome, but have injuries to centres Tom Shanklin, Gavin Henson and Andrew Bishop.

Head coach Warren Gatland today names his team to face Italy on Saturday and may have to rely on his most versatile player to shore up an injury-hit midfield.

Gatland's most likely option is to move Hook to centre and recall Stephen Jones, a substitute against Scotland, at fly-half, where he started against England.

Assistant coach Neil Jenkins said it was not fair to keep moving Hook, but added: 'He goes in all sorts of positions because he's that good.'

Wales hope wing Leigh Halfpenny will be fit for the first time since injuring an ankle last summer.

Struggling: Powell injured his shoulder in the defeat to England

Struggling: Powell injured his shoulder in the defeat to England

If so, he will play on the right ahead of Morgan Stoddart. Jenkins also said props Paul James and Craig Mitchell are expected to be fit, but No 8 Andy Powell, who hurt a shoulder against England, is still struggling.

Welsh wing George North, 18, who made an impressive introduction in the autumn games, is due to play for Scarlets against Edinburgh on Thursday after a dislocated shoulder.

Scotland have lost three backs for Sunday's match against Ireland at Murrayfield. Northampton centre Joe Ansbro (concussion), full-back Hugo Southwell (facial injury) and utility back Rory Lamont (leg) have all been ruled out. Ireland are boosted by the return of wings Tommy Bowe and Andrew Trimble.