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Page last updated at 10:15 GMT, Friday, 5 February 2010

Wales poised for Mike Phillips Six Nations boost

Mike Phillips
Mike Phillips could be fit to face Ireland on 13 March in the Six Nations

Wales scrum-half Mike Phillips is on course to play a part in the Six Nations after being lined up to return from ankle surgery on 12 February.

Phillips could play for Swansea against Carmarthen Quins that Friday night and for the Ospreys nine days later.

The Ospreys host Connacht on 21 February, Wales face France five days later then play Ireland and Italy.

"He's keen to get out there. During the week he was saying he was ready to go," said Ospreys player-coach Filo Tiatia.

"But the medical team are the professionals here and they'll tell him when he's ready."

Phillips suffered the injury against Clermont Auvergne in October and missed Wales' November Tests against New Zealand, Samoa, Argentina and Australia.

The 2009 British and Irish Lions tourist to South Africa has established himself ahead of Dwayne Peel and Gareth Cooper in Wales' pecking order during Warren Gatland's reign.


But injuries have disrupted his progress and his need to regain full match fitness is likely prevent Phillips returning to the national squad until at least 13 March when Wales face Ireland.

The initial diagnosis of Phillips' injury suggested he would be out for eight weeks.

But subsequent tests revealed Phillips would be out for most of the winter months.

His injury - and the groin problem suffered by Sale's Dwayne Peel against Cardiff Blues in January - means Gareth Cooper starts for Wales at Twickenham on Saturday.

Cooper's Blues rival Richie Rees is on the bench and the Scarlets' Martin Roberts is also in the Wales squad.

Phillips' injury has also caused the Ospreys problems amid a scrum-half injury crisis that prompted them to sign South Africa's Ricky Januarie on now-ended a three-month deal.

Wales' 35-man Six Nations squad:

Backs: Gareth Cooper, Leigh Halfpenny, Tom James, Richard Rees, Jamie Roberts, Tom Shanklin (all Cardiff Blues) Dan Biggar, Andrew Bishop, Lee Byrne, James Hook, Kristian Phillips, Tom Prydie, Shane Williams (all Ospreys), Jonathan Davies, Stephen Jones, Martin Roberts (all Scarlets).

Forwards: Bradley Davies, Gethin Jenkins, Deiniol Jones, Andy Powell, Sam Warburton, Gareth Williams, Martyn Williams (all Cardiff Blues), Huw Bennett, Ian Gough, Paul James, Adam Jones, Alun-Wyn Jones, Ryan Jones, Jonathan Thomas (all Ospreys), Matthew Rees (Scarlets), Luke Charteris, Dan Lydiate (both Newport Gwent Dragons), Eifion Lewis-Roberts (Sale Sharks), Rhys Gill (Saracens).

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see also
Wales hit by Jenkins injury blow
04 Feb 10 |  Welsh
Phillips suffers Six Nations blow
23 Oct 09 |  Welsh
Wales' rugby fixtures
26 Jun 07 |  Welsh
Wales rugby results archive
15 Oct 03 |  Welsh
Heineken Cup
11 Apr 07 |  Rugby Union
RaboDirect Pro12
11 Apr 07 |  Rugby Union
Anglo-Welsh Cup
11 Apr 07 |  Rugby Union
European rugby archive
16 Aug 06 |  Rugby Union
Coming up next on Scrum V...
03 Nov 08 |  Welsh
BBC Sport Wales coverage
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