Wales head coach Warren Gatland has been dealt a further injury blow before next month’s Six Nations with the news that experienced Ospreys backrower Dan Lydiate will miss the rest of the season as he prepares to undergo surgery on a bicep injury.
62 times-capped Lydiate suffered the injury during the improving Ospreys 22-9 win over the Dragons on New Year’s Eve and will have an operation this week to rectify the injury.
Gatland had already resigned himself to losing the 2012 grand slam winner for Wales’ tough opener against Scotland on February 3, but was hoping the tough 17st, 9lb flanker would be available for the latter half of the tournament.
But he will now have to do without the services of the 2013 Lions tourist as Wales’ injury woes continue.
Speaking to the Ospreys’ official website, the region’s medical performance manager Chris Towers confirmed the disappointing news:
“After speaking to consultants and seeking specialist opinion, the decision has been taken in Dan’s best interests to undergo surgery.
“That process will take place this week, ruling him out of consideration for the rest of the current season.”
The former Dragons and Racing 92 flanker had only returned to action at the start of the season after damaging his ACL during Wales’ 2016 autumn international win over South Africa in November 2016.
The 30-year-old had been in good form since his return and he joins Sam Warburton, Jonathan Davies and Jake Ball in missing the whole of this year’s Six Nations while Taulupe Faletau, Hallam Amos and George North are to miss the Scotland game.
Wales will be looking to improve on a poor fifth place finish last year, which saw them only pick up two wins.