Scar­let’s World Cup hopes boosted

Llanelli Star - - FRONT PAGE -

RHYS Patchell has been handed a World Cup life­line af­ter Gareth An­scombe’s dev­as­tat­ing in­jury blow.

An­scombe was ruled out of the global tour­na­ment in Ja­pan af­ter suf­fer­ing knee lig­a­ment dam­age in Wales’s de­feat by Eng­land at Twick­en­ham on Sun­day.

It’s un­clear how long the Ospreys man is ex­pected to be side­lined for.

“The Wales squad and man­age­ment would like to wish Gareth the very best with his re­cov­ery,” said the WRU in a state­ment.

Dan Big­gar will now be Wales’s first choice fly-half head­ing into the tour­na­ment and it leaves War­ren Gat­land with a de­ci­sion to make with three warm-up games re­main­ing, the first of which is against Eng­land this Satur­day.

Head coach Gat­land had been ex­pected to name just two No. 10s – An­scombe and Big­gar – in his 31-man squad. But Scar­lets man Patchell and Cardiff Blues fly­half Jar­rod Evans now look set to bat­tle for a seat on the plane.

Patchell im­pressed on Wales’s tour of Ar­gentina last sum­mer but looked short of con­fi­dence as the 2018-19 sea­son came to a close.

Evans re­mains an ex­cit­ing prospect but is un­proven at Test level.

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