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Rees given all-clear

Cardiff Blues captain Matthew Rees has been given the all-clear following treatment for testicular cancer.

The 33-year-old had been out of action since undergoing surgery in October as he received treatment at the Velindre Hospital in Cardiff, but is now free to resume full-time training.

A Blues statement read: "F ollowing screening and testing, Matthew has been given the all-clear by specialists and does not require further medical treatment.

"Matthew will now start a full-time training programme at Blues as he regains his match fitness with a view to return to rugby."

Former Wales skipper Rees said: "It is a massive weight off my shoulders and while there has always been light at the end of the tunnel for me during difficult times this is the news I always wanted to hear.

"Now I've been given the all-clear I can concentrate on getting back to match fitness and hopefully I can play a part towards the end of this season for the Blues.

"I've been truly overwhelmed by the good luck messages I have received from the rugby world and the fantastic support I've had from my friends, family, my team-mates and staff at Cardiff Blues and the WRU throughout my treatment. It has meant a huge amount to me."

Rees, who has won 58 caps, made his Wales debut in 2005 and became a British and Irish Lions Test player on the 2009 South Africa tour.

He skippered Wales during the 2011 RBS 6 Nations Championship, but missed the World Cup in New Zealand later that year due to a neck injury.

He joined Blues from Scarlets last summer.

Cardiff director of rugby Phil Davies said: "He has shown an amazing resilience and mental toughness throughout such a difficult time.

"Matthew has continued to train, with our strength and conditioning staff throughout his treatment, which is testament to his strength of character and ability to overcome adversity. Not many people could have done that while remaining so positive and determined.

"We are all now all looking forward to seeing him back on the training field and on the field in a Cardiff Blues jersey in the future."

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