Wales have issued a positive update on the fitness of Gareth Anscombe and Liam Williams that eases concerns over the star duo’s fate at the Rugby World Cup.
Anscombe pulled out of the pool match against Georgia on Saturday less than an hour before kick-off due to a groin injury, which caused a backline reshuffle.
Taulupe Faletau out
Those concerns were compounded by veteran Taulupe Faletau being ruled out of the rest of the tournament with a broken arm, with Kieran Hardy called up.
While the loss of the number eight is a blow, the news on Anscombe and Williams from head of physical performance Huw Bennett is much more positive.
“They are good, recovering well,” he said.
“Liam was noted on crutches after the game, but that was just precautionary. And Gareth, it was upsetting to make a last-minute call, but he is recovering well.
“As far as I am aware everyone is available for selection.”
Bennett added on the addition of Hardy: “Kieran was a big part of our group in the 54-man (training) squad in the camps.
“We have been keeping tabs on players on the short-list, making sure they are ready to go.
“Kieran is a great professional, so on that basis we are happy to see him coming into the group and he has got a great relationship with the players as well.
“It has been well-documented – losing Taulupe Faletau is massive for Wales. He is a big character and leads by example.
“After the (Georgia) game we were happy for the victory, but losing Taulupe put a sobering stamp on things.”
Argentina next up
Next up for Wales this weekend will be a quarter-final showdown with Argentina in Marseille, with Bennett admitting the excitement cranks up a notch in camp.
“This is what it is all about,” he said.
“We got together on May 25, we have commented on the dark places we’ve been to in training, and that tends to come up as a reminder in the changing rooms before a game.
“It is doing the little things throughout the week. All the effort, all the sacrifices in the camps, all the little things count this week.”