Influential Wales hooker Ken Owens is set to miss the 2022 Six Nations as a back problem that ruled him out of the Autumn continues to persist.
The Mail Online have reported that ‘his back injury could yet rule him out of the rest of the 2021-22 season.’
Owens, who has 82 Welsh caps and five for the Lions, played in all three Tests as Warren Gatland’s tourists were beaten 2-1 by South Africa last summer.
Wales, who start their title defence against Ireland in Dublin on February 5, will also be without their captain Alun Wyn Jones.
The Ospreys second-row, the most capped player in rugby history, is unlikely to feature due to a shoulder injury suffered against New Zealand.
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Five Most OVERPAID Rugby Players In The World Right Now
#1. Handre Pollard (Montpellier) – £1,000,000 per year
Has the highest-paid player in the world flopped when on the pitch for Montpellier? No, but he’s barely played despite earning more than double Harlequins and England star Marcus Smith (£480,000).
Only six starts and four replacement appearances during 2021 means the Springbok playmaker pocketed £100,000 per game or £2,061 per minute for the French club this calendar year.
Brilliant and absent almost in equal measure, Pollard departs GGL Stadium next summer after agreeing to a much lower contract to join Leicester Tigers.