Wales no.8 Taulupe Faletau has been ruled out of the Rugby World Cup in Japan.
The Welsh Rugby Union has confirmed the talisman back-row forward suffered a collarbone injury during a training session, and the issue requires surgery.
A statement released by the WRU read: “The injury was sustained in an innocuous training ground incident and will require surgery.
“A prognosis and return to play time frame will be established after surgery.
“The Wales squad and management would like to wish Taulupe the very best with his recovery.”
Head coach Warren Gatland has had to deal without the services of Faletau for over a year after the 28-year-old broke his arm twice, the most recent time coming within weeks of the 2019 Six Nations kick-off.
He had been set on marking his mark in Japan after training with the rest of the Wales team in their two-week retreat to the Alpine town Fiesch in Switzerland.
In lieu of Faletau’s time spent sidelined, Gatland has relied on Josh Navidi and Ross Moriarty to assume duties at no.8.
With the duo easing the loss of the British & Irish Lion as Wales roll into pre-tournament matches on a 14-Test winning streak.
Speaking to TRP late last month in Switzerland, Faletau said: “I haven’t played a game yet but I’ve been doing some contact with the boys and [my arm] is holding up OK.
“I had the same procedure the second time round, the surgeon put another plate the other side of the bone to strengthen it.
“It’s about winning my place in the team back, a lot of hard work will go into it but everybody is doing the same thing to put their hand up.
“Playing for your country at a World Cup is on another level.”
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