Welsh trio omitted from training camp
July 13, 2011
Thomas appeared in all but one match in the Six Nations but now faces a battle to be named in Wales' 30-man squad for the World Cup © Getty Images
Welsh internationals Jonathan Thomas, Andy Powell and Richie Rees have received a blow after they have been reportedly omitted from Wales' training camp.
The trio could still make the plane to New Zealand but, according to BBC Wales, the three will not be making the trip to Poland in Wales' second 10-day training camp. Wales coach Warren Gatland has also opted to leave Scarlets hooker Ken Owens, Scarlets lock Lou Reed and Ospreys centre Andrew Bishop out of the party. Gatland has now trimmed his original 45-man training squad down to 35 as he seeks to finalise the 30 who will travel to New Zealand as part of Wales' World Cup squad.
Stephen Jones, who recently earned his 100th cap for Wales against the Barbarians, will travel after he missed the first camp for the birth of his first child. However, Thomas' omission will come as a shock for the Ospreys backrow after he played in four out of five matches for Wales in the Six Nations and played full matches against Australia, South Africa and Fiji in the autumn internationals.
Backrow Powell has endured a troubled season at former club Wasps and last featured for Wales against England in his nation's 26-19 defeat at the Millennium Stadium. Rees missed the Six Nations campaign due to suspension.
Gatland received a boost on Tuesday with the news that star prop Gethin Jenkins is raring to go but he still has concerns over the fitness of winger Leigh Halfpenny. Wales face England on August 6 in the first of three Tests before the World Cup.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
As Ray McLoughlin prepares to celebrate his 75th birthday, Huw Richards pays tribute to the man and the selectors who had the wisdom to bring him into the Ireland fold
John Taylor argues the world's best XVs players must be given a chance to play in the Olympics to increase the appeal of the game
The All Blacks' form is not a peaking issue, but Hansen must threaten to wield his axe, to demand improvement, Craig Dowd writes
"It has been the World Cup that smashed down the gender barriers of the sport." Tom Hamilton looks back at a remarkable tournament