Wed 14 Oct 2020 | 03:23

Wales centre feared the worst after injury

Wales centre feared the worst after injury
Wed 14 Oct 2020 | 03:23
Wales centre feared the worst after injury
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SPOTLIGHT: Jonathan Davies feared he would never play for Wales again following the injury which sidelined him for almost a year.

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The 32-year-old centre is set to pull on the Wales jersey for the first time since their World Cup third-place play-off defeat against New Zealand on November 1.

Davies, who has featured on 81 occasions for his country, underwent an operation on his left knee following the tournament in Japan. But after he returned for Scarlets in a friendly against Ospreys last month, he is now fit enough to play in a warm-up with France in Paris a week on Saturday.

Asked at Wales’  kit launch if he was always confident of a return to the international arena, Davies said: “I’m not sure about that because the type of surgery I had meant there was a waiting game.

“I had to keep my knee dead straight for twelve weeks and at that point, I had a scan to see how the surgery went. All other operations that I have had, you know you have been repaired when you are in the hospital bed and you have been stitched back up.

“But with this one, I was hoping the body would adapt and help itself to recover. Thankfully it did and since that point, it has been pretty good and I have been happy with my rehab programme.”

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Following his return against Ospreys, Davies has featured in two subsequent  PRO14 matches against Munster and Glasgow. “Obviously my body is still a bit rusty but I feel like I am going in the right direction,” he added.

“The knee feels good and it is just about working hard and trying to get back to where I was before the injury and try and push on again. There is still work to be done but the main thing is that the knee feels good and I am happy with that.

“For every Welsh kid growing up they want to represent their country and I have been fortunate enough to do it a few times. I have to keep working hard and earning my place in the squad and the team and that is down to me to put myself in the right position.”

Meanwhile, Wayne Pivac has been forced to rejig the 37-man Wales squad announced last week after injuries precluded Ken Owens and Josh MacLeod from taking a sufficient enough part in training.

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Pivac named his squad eight days ago – a group that included seven uncapped players – for the upcoming autumn campaign which commences with an October 24 friendly versus France in Paris. However, the New Zealander has already been forced to tinker with his selection.

A statement from the WRU read: “Ken Owens (shoulder) and Josh Macleod (hamstring) have both been released from the Wales squad due to respective injuries which preclude them from taking a significant part in training. Elliot Dee (Dragons) and James Davies (Scarlets) have been called into the squad.”

Macleod was one of two uncapped forwards named last week, along with hooker Sam Parry, while five uncapped backs were Kieran Hardy, Callum Sheedy, Johnny Williams, Louis Rees-Zammit and Ioan Lloyd.

Bristol pivot Sheedy had been involved in a tug of war with England in recent times and, along with Williams, had played for England against the Barbarians.

RWC squad members Tomas Francis, Rhys Patchell and Jonathan Davies, who all missed the Guinness Six Nations campaign earlier this year, returned from injury and Davies revealed on Wednesday how he feared his Wales career was over following last November’s injury. “The type of surgery I had meant there was a waiting game,” he explained.

“I had to keep my knee dead straight for twelve weeks and at that point, I had a scan to see how the surgery went. All other operations that I have had, you know you have been repaired when you are in the hospital bed and you have been stitched back up.

“But with this one, I was hoping the body would adapt and help itself to recover. Thankfully it did and since that point, it has been pretty good and I have been happy with my rehab programme.”

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Wales centre feared the worst after injury | Rugby365