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Rugby World Cup: Gareth Anscombe and James Hook called up by wounded Wales

By Andrew Baldock

Published 29/09/2015

End of the World: Scott Williams is stretchered off after injuring his knee in his side’s 28-25 victory over England
End of the World: Scott Williams is stretchered off after injuring his knee in his side’s 28-25 victory over England
Going home: Hallam Amos is helped off at Twickenham

Wales have suffered two more major World Cup injury blows with centre Scott Williams and wing Hallam Amos both sidelined for the rest of the tournament.

Scarlets midfielder Williams (knee) and Newport Gwent Dragons back Amos (shoulder) went off during the second-half of Wales' 28-25 Pool A victory over England at Twickenham on Saturday.

The Welsh Rugby Union announced that the pair have been released from the squad, with Gloucester back James Hook and Cardiff Blues' Gareth Anscombe called up as replacements.

Wales have now lost five injured players from their original World Cup squad, with Williams and Amos joining Leigh Halfpenny, Rhys Webb and Cory Allen.

In a statement, subject to World Rugby confirmation, the WRU said: "Following the Rugby World Cup victory against England on Saturday, Scott Williams (knee) and Hallam Amos (shoulder) have sustained injuries that will preclude them from taking any further part in the tournament, and they have subsequently been released from the Wales squad.

"Both players are currently being assessed by specialists to establish an accurate prognosis.

"James Hook and Gareth Anscombe, who were both part of Wales' Rugby World Cup training squad and featured in warm-up Tests ahead of the tournament, have been called into the squad as replacements."

Hook, who has won 78 caps, will play in his third World Cup and could easily be involved against Pool A opponents Fiji on Thursday.

He is a versatile player, having played Test rugby as a full-back, centre and fly-half.

Meanwhile, New Zealand-born Anscombe, whose father Mark is a former Ulster boss, has recovered from an ankle injury he suffered during Wales training last month. He made his Test debut in an August World Cup warm-up game against Ireland.

The WRU have also announced that full-back Liam Williams will not be considered for the Fiji game.

Williams was concussed during the England match after Red Rose flanker Tom Wood caught him on the head with his boot. Wood received an official warning, rather than a citing.

The WRU added: "Liam Williams sustained concussion in the same (England) game and will not be considered for the Fiji fixture due to the impending time frame of the game.

"He will be assessed and is to undertake a graduated return to play before being considered for selection for Wales' following game against Australia."

Wales have claimed nine points from a possible 10 in their group, and victory over Fiji would put them within touching distance of the quarter-finals.

If Wales beat Fiji and Australia defeat England at Twickenham two days later, England will crash out of the tournament.

Belfast Telegraph

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