Ken Owens has been selected to captain the British and Irish Lions in their second tour outing against Super Rugby outfit the Blues at Eden Park on Wednesday (7 June).

The 30-year-old Scarlets and Wales hooker, experiencing his first Lions tour, will lead a team that shows 15 changes from Saturday's thoroughly unconvincing and error-strewn 13-7 opening victory over the New Zealand Provincial Barbarians in Whangarei.

"In terms of Ken, he has worked really hard on his recovery and its great to have him available," head coach Warren Gatland said. "He has captained the Scarlets and has assumed a leadership role within the camp and it is a great opportunity for him."

Owens is joined in the front row by props Jack McGrath and Dan Cole, while England duo Maro Itoje and Courtney Lawes are partnered at lock. The back row is comprised of James Haskell, Justin Tipuric and CJ Stander.

Wales' Rhys Webb and Dan Biggar form the half-back pairing and Ireland teammates Jared Payne and Robbie Henshaw come in at centre. The back three slots will be filled by Leigh Halfpenny, Jack Nowell and Elliot Daly. Rory Best, Joe Marler, Kyle Sinckler, Iain Henderson, Peter O'Mahony, Greig Laidlaw, Johnny Sexton and Liam Williams make up the list of replacements.

"We have stated from the off that we want to give every player a start in the first three games and Wednesday is an opportunity for this set of players to show what they can do in a Lions jersey," Gatland said. "It was good to get the win under our belts last weekend. The boys in the stand were itching to get their chance and they are really excited about Wednesday.

Ken Owens
Ken Owens faces the media in Auckland on Monday

"We are expecting a big crowd at Eden Park. It will be the first of three matches there for us and we know the atmosphere will be outstanding. We are hoping for some good weather and are expecting a tough, fast and open game of rugby."

The Blues have tentatively named Sonny Bill Williams in their starting XV, but the cross-code All Black star has been suffering with a knee injury and will undergo a late fitness test to determine if it is he or TJ Faiane who will start at 12.

Other players with international experience for New Zealand included by coach Tana Umaga - who has predictably faced renewed questions regarding his and Keven Mealamu's infamous tour-ending spear tackle on Brian O'Driscoll back in 2005 - include George Moala, Rieko Ioane, Steve Luatua, Charlie Faumuina, James Parsons and Ofa Tu'ungafasi.

British and Irish Lions fixtures [8:35am BST kick-off time unless otherwise stated]

Wednesday 7 June – Blues – Eden Park, Auckland

Saturday 10 June – Crusaders – AMI Stadium, Christchurch

Tuesday 13 June – Highlanders – Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin

Saturday 17 June – New Zealand Maori – International Stadium, Rotorua

Tuesday 20 June – Chiefs– Waikato Stadium, Hamilton

Saturday 24 June – New Zealand– First Test, Eden Park, Auckland

Tuesday 27 June – Hurricanes – Westpac Stadium, Wellington

Saturday 1 July – New Zealand – Second Test, Westpac Stadium, Wellington

Saturday 8 July – New Zealand – Third Test, Eden Park, Auckland