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Injuries Continue To Mount For Wales As Autumn Internationals Edge Nearer

Wales LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 17: Rob Howley, Attack Coach of Wales looks on prior to kickoff during the 2015 Rugby World Cup Quarter Final match between South Africa and Wales at Twickenham Stadium on October 17, 2015 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

Wales have been hit by injuries to star players Liam Williams and George North before their Autumn international series which kicks off against Australia in two weeks, according to Wales Online.

Williams, who has been in impressive form this season, limped off after only 15 minutes in the Scarlets’ 44-26 away defeat to reigning European Champions Saracens in their European Champions Cup pool match. A shoo in to start at full-back or on the wing, Williams’ loss would be a big blow to Wales.

Commenting on Williams’ injury soon after the full-back had left the field, Scarlets team manager and former Wales centre Mark Taylor, said,

”It is a worry for us and Wales going forward.”

Meanwhile, Northampton flyer North, according to director of rugby Jim Mallinder, suffered a swollen hand after taking a heavy knock on it early in the second half of the Saints’ 41-7 drubbing at the hands of Castres.

NORTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 15: George North of Northampton Saints is tackled by Alexandre Dumoulin and Frans Steyn of Montpellier during the European Rugby Champions Cup match between Northampton Saints and Montpellier at Franklin's Gardens October 15, 2016 in Northampton, United Kingdom. (Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images)

Rob Howley and company will be hoping that one of their most potent attacking weapons has not broken anything as they prepare for a tough four-match series that will see them take on Australia, Argentina, Japan and South Africa in the coming weeks.

Due to the fact that the Australia game is outside World Rugby’s Test window, England-based North will very likely miss the game. But Wales will really hope that his hand will be fully healed when Argentina come calling the following week.

To make matters worse for Howley, Scarlets centre Scott Williams was withdrawn from his team’s starting line-up for their clash against Saracens with an ankle injury. After a slow start to the season, the creative 26-year-old has really hit form recently, picking up the man of the match award last weekend in the Scarlets’ 28-11 win over the Sale Sharks.

With England-based Jamie Roberts, like North, also unlikely to feature against Australia, Williams – if fit – would probably start at 12 alongside club mate Jonathan Davies.

CARDIFF, WALES - DECEMBER 19:  Scarlets player Scott Williams in action during the Guinness Pro 12 match between Cardiff Blues and Scarlets at  on December 19, 2014 in Cardiff, United Kingdom.  (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Finally, Scarlets’ lock Jake Ball, one of Wales’ back-up locks, left the field in serious pain with an arm injury in the second half of his club’s game.

With talismanic number eight Taulupe Faletau unavailable for at least the first two games and the possibility of Sam Warburton having to face Australia without having played a game in five weeks, Howley has plenty on his mind.

Skipper Warburton was due to return for the Blues on Friday evening in their European Challenge Cup fixture against Top 14 outfit Pau, after recovering from surgery to a fractured cheekbone. However, he didn’t appear in the game as planned.

With only one PRO12 round of games before November 5 remaining, Wales’ interim head coach will have to decide whether to allow the 28-year-old to play for his region against the Scarlets next Friday or throw him straight into the deep end against the Aussies completely undercooked.

Hefin Jones, Pundit Arena

Recommended Read: Eddie Jones Sweats On The Fitness Of Maro Itoje Following Saracens’ Win Over Sacrlets

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Author: The PA Team

This article was written by a member of The PA Team.