Wales to give injured lock Cory Hill another fitness test

Sports

TOYOTA, Japan (AP)Wales will give a fitness test to injured lock Cory Hill on Tuesday, which may decide whether he stays at the Rugby World Cup.

Hill injured his ankle playing against England at the Six Nations in February but still made the squad for Japan. However, he might not get to add to his 24 test caps just yet.

Wales coach Warren Gatland replied ”possibly” when asked if Hill is going to be ruled out of the tournament.

”If he doesn’t return to fitness he’ll go back to the U.K.,” Gatland added. ”But we’re going to assess him tomorrow and just see how much progress he’s made.”

Wales beat Georgia 43-14 on Monday and has matches in Pool D against Australia on Sunday, then Fiji and Uruguay.

Gatland’s side scored six tries against Georgia without adding to its injury list, even though flyhalf Dan Biggar picked up a minor cut to his chin from a teammate’s head during the pre-match warmup.

”He’s fine,” Gatland said. ”I’ve just been through it with the physio now. We’ve got a few guys sore and battered, as you’d expect after an international test match. But nothing of major concern.”

Wales led 29-0 at halftime, and then faded after the break.

Two-time champion Australia followed the opposite pattern in beating Fiji 39-21 in its opening game.

”They’re a tough side. Australia played exceptionally well against the All Blacks in Perth,” Gatland said. ”As a team we tend to get stronger the longer we go on in tournaments. But there’s a lot of room for us to improve.”

More AP Rugby World Cup: https://www.apnews.com/RugbyWorldCup and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

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