Six Nations 2019: Back Leigh Halfpenny ruled out of Wales’ opener with France

Wales encourage Leigh Halfpenny has now not played since struggling concussion in November’s get dangle of over Australia
Six Countries: France v Wales
Venue: Stade de France, Paris Date: Friday, 1 February Kick-off: 20:00 GMT
Coverage: Dwell on BBC One Wales & S4C, BBC Radio Wales, BBC Radio Cymru & BBC Sport internet site and BBC Sport app, plus are living text commentary

Leigh Halfpenny has been ruled out of Wales’ opening Six Countries sport away to France in Paris on Friday, 1 February.

The 30-one year-extinct British and Irish Lions encourage has now not played since struggling concussion in the get dangle of over Australia on 10 November.

That would possibly possibly possibly also proceed Wales immediate at paunchy-encourage, as fellow Lion Liam Williams has overlooked practising with a broken finger.

Scrum-half of Gareth Davies and centre Scott Williams stay well-known injury doubts to face Les Bleus.

Scarlets lock Jake Ball, 27, is essentially the most uncomplicated player in the 39-man squad launched to play for his build this weekend.

His crew-mate Rhys Patchell has been sidelined with a hamstring injury, but Scarlets squawk the 25-one year-extinct encourage is “about per week or two away” from a return – giving him an alternative of figuring at Stade de France.

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Abet-row Ross Moriarty and lock Adam Beard are gentle recuperating from concussion and stay doubtful.

With Lions and Bathtub encourage-row Taulupe Faletau seemingly to omit the tournament with a broken arm, the supply of Moriarty has added importance.

Wales coach Warren Gatland urged that Halfpenny, who has won 80 caps for his nation and scored 713 facets, will almost definitely be seemingly to omit the 2d sport against Italy in Rome on 9 February.

“We potentially would possibly possibly now not bear in mind Leigh Halfpenny for the first couple of video games,” he acknowledged.

“He’s making development and enhancing. We are unsleeping in the mean time that he’s a chunk symptomatic with complications but he has been taking fragment in practising.

“For us it be about easing him encourage in slowly. Hopefully he begins taking a extra traditional fragment in practising and doubtlessly see at alongside with him in direction of the pause of the tournament.

“He’s been doing quite loads of 1-on-one work with Neil Jenkins with his kicking, in instruct that is been a shining distraction for him.

“There is now not any stress from us in attempting to flee him encourage. Doubtlessly the most though-provoking thing is his smartly being and safety and things are all proper.

Wales beget good injury concerns for scrum-half of Gareth Davies and centre Scott Williams forward of France

“Gareth Davies has a quad (thigh muscle) stress, Liam Williams has a broken finger and hasn’t taken fragment in some practising.

“A pair of concussions with Ross Moriarty, who need to gentle be encourage practising; Adam Beard gentle has just a few signs from concussion.

“Scott Williams is struggling (with an ankle injury) for the first sport.”

Despite the injury concerns, Gatland is confident of his aspect’s probabilities as he takes mark of Wales for the final time in the Six Countries sooner than he steps down after the 2019 World Cup.

Wales are unbeaten in 9 Checks, their longest a success shuffle since 1999, after completing their first trim sweep of autumn fixtures that integrated wins over Australia, South Africa and Scotland.

“We’re relaxed where we are in the mean time, we if truth be told appreciate that if we are able to get dangle of that first sport against on Friday night we now beget got a mountainous likelihood of a success the Six Countries,” he acknowledged.

“The well-known two video games we’re far from dwelling after which we now beget got England and Eire at dwelling, so we feel we now beget got a mountainous alternative.

“We carried out 2d in the Six Countries final one year and beget had a mountainous one year. We proper feel savor we’re in a shining notify.”

Wales squad

Forwards: Grab Evans (Scarlets), Wyn Jones (Scarlets), Nicky Smith (Ospreys), Elliot Dee (Dragons), Ryan Elias (Scarlets), Ken Owens (Scarlets), Leon Brown (Dragons), Tomas Francis (Exeter Chiefs), Samson Lee (Scarlets), Dillon Lewis (Cardiff Blues), Jake Ball (Scarlets), Adam Beard (Ospreys), Seb Davies (Cardiff Blues), Cory Hill (Dragons), Alun Wyn Jones (captain, Ospreys) Ross Moriarty (Dragons), Josh Navidi (Cardiff Blues), Justin Tipuric (Ospreys), Josh Turnbull (Cardiff Blues), Aaron Wainwright (Dragons), Thomas Younger (Wasps).

Backs: Aled Davies (Ospreys), Gareth Davies (Scarlets), Tomos Williams (Cardiff Blues), Gareth Anscombe (Cardiff Blues), Dan Biggar (Northampton), Jarrod Evans (Cardiff Blues), Rhys Patchell (Scarlets), Jonathan Davies (Scarlets), Hadleigh Parkes (Scarlets), Owen Watkin (Ospreys), Scott Williams (Ospreys), Josh Adams (Worcester), Hallam Amos (Dragons), Steffan Evans (Scarlets), Leigh Halfpenny (Scarlets), Jonah Holmes (Leicester), George North (Ospreys), Liam Williams (Saracens).

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