10 Dec, 12:23
Ireland's John Lacey will referee his first ever RBS 6 Nations match in February, while Alain Rolland is also included in the Elite Panel in what is his last season.
The 31-year-old missed the Irish clash with a finger injury and replaces the man who deputised for him as captain then, Martyn Williams, in the back row.
While Williams drops to the bench lock Robert Sidoli is dropped altogether and replaced by Michael Owen with veteran Gareth Llewellyn taking the latter's place on the bench.
Prop Gethin Jenkins replaces Adam Jones, who has an ankle injury while experienced centre Mark Taylor got the nod for his 45th cap slightly surprisingly ahead of Tom Shanklin - who scored their two tries against the Irish - in the starting line-up as Sonny Parker failed to recover from injury.
Wales coach Hansen said he felt sorry for the players who had been dropped. "Robert Sidoli has only played two games in the last eight weeks because of his pelvis problem and in Michael Owen we have someone who is in excellent current form," said the 44-year-old former New Zealand detective.
"Sid will turn out for his region because he needs more match play. We had a tough decision in the back row and have gone for size to combat a big French pack.
"The decision is no reflection on Martyn Williams' performance last time out and he will come on and play a part later in the game, as he has done so effectively in the past.
"In the front row Duncan Jones has a slight wrist injury, so we decided it was too risky to consider him for selection when in Iestyn Thomas we have a top-quality player," added Hansen, who is leaving his post at the end of the campaign to reunite with his predecssor in the Welsh job and now All Blacks handler Graham Henry.
Hansen implied that Shanklin had lost out to Taylor because the former was capable of covering several positions in the backs. "Mark Taylor offers a valuable level of experience and, of the options available to us to replace Sonny, Tom Shanklin is able to cover wing, centre and full-back from the bench," said Hansen.
Wales: Gareth Thomas (Celtic Warriors); Rhys Williams (Cardiff), Mark Taylor (Llanelli), Iestyn Harris (Cardiff), Shane Williams (Neath-Swansea); Stephen Jones (Llanelli), Gareth Cooper (Celtic Warriors); Dafydd Jones (Llanelli), Colin Charvis (Tarbes/FRA) capt, Jonathan Thomas (Neath-Swansea); Michael Owen (Dragons), Brent Cockbain (Celtic Warriors); Gethin Jenkins (Celtic Warriors), Robin McBryde (Llanelli), Iestyn Thomas (Llanelli) Replacements: Mefin Davies (Celtic Warriors), Ben Evans (Cardiff), Gareth Llewellyn (Neath-Swansea), Martyn Williams (Cardiff), Tom Shanklin (Cardiff), Dwayne Peel (Llanelli), Ceri Sweeney (Celtic Warriors)