Triple Six Nations injury blow for Wales

Wales coach Warren Gatland has revealed that prop Gethin Jenkins will miss
the start of the Six Nations because of a knee injury and could be out for four
to five weeks.

Flyhalf Rhys Priestland will miss the opening game with a knee problem and
Gatland admitted that Newport Gwent Dragons flanker Dan Lydiate faces a race
against time due to an ankle problem.

“Gethin is struggling and could be out for four to five weeks. Rhys will
be struggling for the first game. We’re assessing him day by day,” said

He added: “Dan Lydiate is touch and go. We’re hoping Jamie Roberts will
be OK”.

Gatland admitted the loss of Lions front row Jenkins and Priestland, who emerged
as one of the stars of last year’s World Cup, will be keenly felt.

“Gethin is a huge loss for us for potentially the first two games of the
tournament. He’s been playing exceptionally well for the Blues in the last month.

“He’s a world class player. He’s got a very good rugby brain and is able
to asses things on the field. He’s almost like a coach on the field.

“You get a lot of information from him at half-time, what’s going right
or wrong, tactically where we need to change.

“Rhys was probably the find, if not the best, fly-half at the World Cup.
He really does fit the type of game we want to play. His kicking game and vision
are excellent. He stretches opposition defences as well because he’s not afraid
to run.

“There’s a very good balance to his game. You can’t underestimate the
space he created for our midfield at the World Cup.

“He was one of the reasons we saw some really big performances from Jamie
Roberts, Jon Davies and Scott Williams. He will be a big loss for us.

“But there’s experience to come in with James Hook and we may look at
Gavin Henson in that position too.”

In Priestland’s absence, Blues winger Leigh Halfpenny is the front runner to
take over the kicking duties.

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