Gethin Jenkins' return a big boost for Wales
WALES’ autumn series hopes have been given a major boost with Gethin Jenkins set to make his first appearance this Sunday since being sidelined for nearly five months.
The loosehead prop is due to play for Cardiff Blues this weekend when they entertain Edinburgh in the RaboDirect PRO12.
It could be his first game since he came on as a replacement for Toulon in May’s 16-15 Heineken Cup final victory over Clermont Auvergne in Dublin.
Jenkins injured his calf in that momentous game which wrecked his British and Irish Lions tour of Australia, the three-times Grand Slam winner forced to abandon his trip after just two weeks.
The 32-year-old has won 98 caps and confessed the incentive of reaching his century played a major part in his decision to return home from the Côte d’Azur where he had struggled to oust England’s Andrew Sheridan.
He could reach the 100 mark when Wales host four autumn internationals next month against South Africa, Argentina, Tonga and Australia.
If Jenkins plays for his region this weekend, he will also make his first appearance since rejoining the Blues from Toulon as the Cardiff Arms Park side look to bounce back from consecutive defeats in the league and the embarrassment of being the first side to lose to Italian newcomers Zebre in their last home game.
Blues director of rugby Phil Davies said: "Gethin should be involved this week and he has trained well.
"This week we are fit and we pick the strongest available team and we will do for the next three or four games because we need to get momentum and put in some good performances and get the results.
"We can expect a big, tough, physical battle. I have spoken to other coaches who have played them (Edinburgh) and we will need to match them physically.
"They also have a good kick and chase game and they get big forwards coming around the corner at you. We've got to make sure we front up and we've got to be well organised in the back field to deal with the kicking game.”
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