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Page last updated at 20:18 GMT, Thursday, 18 November 2010

Shane Williams fears Six Nations injury blow

Shane Williams winces in pain
Shane Williams winces in pain after damaging his shoulder against South Africa

Wales record try scorer Shane Williams could miss the start of the Six Nations after surgery on the shoulder injury suffered in defeat to South Africa.

The wing, 33, expected to be out for up to 10 weeks but now fears it will be 12 weeks before he can target a comeback.

Wales start the 2011 Six Nations at home to England on 4 February, then travel to Scotland the following week.

If Williams' fears are realised he may only be able to start serious training again in the second week of February.

"I'm looking at five to six weeks in the sling that I'm in at the moment... that means I can't really do anything for the next five weeks," Williams told Scrum V Radio.

"Then I'm looking at 10 to 12 weeks all together, so it's a bit gutting really that I'm going to be out that long.

"It's a little bit sore at the moment, I've had the operation on Monday and the pain-killers are doing the trick, fair play, but unfortunately I'm going to miss the next few months.

"I'm gutted really because I was enjoying my rugby... but I can't worry too much about missing games now, can't dwell on it, because I'll end up trying to push and get back earlier than I possibly can."

The hope was that the dislocation Williams suffered after being thrown to the ground by Frans Steyn had not caused too much damage, and that the surgery would just be exploratory.

My main target is getting back for the Six Nations now, whether it's at the start or halfway through I really don't know

Wales wing Shane Williams

"First of all they just wanted to go in and have a look and see if there was anything out of place in the shoulder," Williams added.

"Having gone in there they had to do a little bit of work as well... not too serious but serious enough to warrant some work and some tidying up."

Williams misses Wales' remaining autumn Tests against Fiji on Friday and New Zealand the following Saturday, and also rules him out of the Ospreys' Heineken Cup pool games against Munster, twice, London Irish and Toulon.

He will also miss the big festive Welsh derbies against the Scarlets and Cardiff Blues.

Even a 10-week recovery would leave Williams short of match fitness and struggling to make the Six Nations opener with England, while even the match at Murrayfield on 12 February looks an outside chance.

The more realistic prognosis is that the man who has scored 51 tries for his country will have to wait until the trip to Italy on 26 February before winning his 76th cap.

"I'll get back as soon as I can, as soon as I'm 100%. I'm going to miss a lot of the important games for Wales and the Ospreys of course," Williams said.

"My main target is getting back for the Six Nations now, whether it's at the start or halfway through I really don't know.

"And of course if I am getting back to fitness then, am I going to be ready to play. I've got a lot of things to think about and work on now in the next couple of months."

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see also
Wales 16-16 Fiji
19 Nov 10 |  Rugby Union
Jones eager for pack battle
18 Nov 10 |  Welsh
Jones takes blame for Fiji draw
19 Nov 10 |  Welsh
Jones returns as Wales captain
18 Nov 10 |  Welsh
Wales stumble at Tri-Nations block
14 Nov 10 |  Welsh
Wales 25-29 South Africa
13 Nov 10 |  Welsh
Wales 16-25 Australia
06 Nov 10 |  Rugby Union
Ireland 21-23 South Africa
06 Nov 10 |  Rugby Union
Fire and flair: Fijian rugby
29 Sep 06 |  Rugby Union
Wales' rugby fixtures
26 Jun 07 |  Welsh
Wales rugby results archive
15 Oct 03 |  Welsh

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