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Page last updated at 07:37 GMT, Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Wales coach Warren Gatland hints at Adam Jones comeback

Adam Jones returned to action for the Ospreys against Glasgow
Adam Jones returned to action for the Ospreys against Glasgow

Wales coach Warren Gatland has not ruled out the return of prop Adam Jones for their final Six Nations game against France in Paris on 19 March.

The tight-head made his Ospreys comeback in the region's 37-6 win over Glasgow last weekend after being out for seven weeks with an elbow injury.

But Wales opted not to call up Jones for Saturday's clash with Ireland.

"Adam only had 20 minutes the other day and he admitted himself he was a bit off the pace," said Gatland.

Speaking about a Wales return for 30-year-old Jones in the game against France, Gatland said: "I haven't even thought about that yet - it's a possibility.

"We all know what Adam Jones can do and we all know what his quality is but it's quite hard to throw a player in at the deep end that hasn't played for eight weeks - it's a consideration for us.

"Weight-wise he is not too bad but his body fat has gone up a little, which is a bit of a concern for us in terms of where he is to play international rugby."

Halfpenny 'overwhelmed' by recall

British and Irish Lions prop Jones was ruled out of the opening games of the Six Nations after having surgery on an elbow injury, which he picked up in the Ospreys' Heineken Cup clash against London Irish in January.

And in a double Lions blow Gatland also lost loose-head Gethin Jenkins before the championship in January after he needed toe surgery, ruling him out of the entire Six Nations.

It forced Gatland to pick Paul James and Craig Mitchell as his Wales props, but the pair have largely held their own in the first three games.

But while Jones could return against France, Gatland is concentrating on Wales' final home game of the Six Nations tournament - the clash against Ireland on Saturday.

"It's going to be a really tough game but it's about us having a good performance at home in front of a full house," said Gatland.

"It's the last opportunity for us to do this during this campaign and the fans deserve that."

And he says Wales' selection for the closing game at Stade de France all depends on how his team and individuals perform on Saturday.

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Hook handed Wales fly-half shirt
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Ireland unchanged for Wales clash
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Ospreys 37-6 Glasgow
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Gatland eyes stand-ins for Jones
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Wales rugby results archive
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BBC Sport Wales coverage
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