Nathan Hughes poised for an immediate return, avoids major injury scare

Nathan Hughes is set for a quick return from a dead leg at injury-ravaged Wasps
Nathan Hughes is set for a quick return from a dead leg at injury-ravaged Wasps

Nathan Hughes is set to make an immediate return to action much to the delight of Wasps after sustaining just dead leg in the previous game against Bath.

Hughes, who was also reprimanded by the citing commissioner for performing a dangerous tackle on Bath number eight Taulupe Faletau during Sunday's Premiership game at Ricoh Arena left the field with an injury in the closing stage of the first half but now is expected to be available for their next encounter against Saracens at Allianz Park on Sunday.

The news will be a big relief to England coach Eddie Jones ahead of the autumn internationals as he already lost the services of Billy Vunipola with a knee injury.

Wasps rugby director Dai Young expressed delight on the status of Hughes considering the Ricoh Arena outfit having some 15 frontline players already on the sidelines due to injuries.

"When any player gets injured it's a real blow, but this season it seems to have gone from one player to the next," said Young.

"You become a bit philosophical about it really, but it's great that Nathan will be back quickly.

"We're sweating on his availability for this weekend as he recovers from a dead leg, but if he isn't right for Saracens he'll definitely be back for the next game.

"But when he went off at the weekend we missed his ball-carrying, we lacked his penetration.

"Nathan gives you that go-forward that can really make a difference, give you penetration and draw a defence tighter to create space out wide.

"Going into last weekend we had 14 players unavailable, we've lost another two but some could be back as well - so we're looking at about 15 missing this weekend.

"That's certainly as bad as I've known it here, we don't normally have any more than about five or six missing.

"I'm not having any sleepless nights about selection though - because we've got 24 guys to pick 23 from!"

Scrum-half Dan Robson and full-back Willie le Roux should be fit for Wasps' Saracens trip, with props Matt Mullan and Marty Moore also available again. Paul Doran-Jones and Brendan Macken are battling knee cartilage problem and dead leg problems respectively.

"The real problem for us is hooker, it's not feasible for Ashley Johnson and Tom Cruse to be on the field together for the next four months, because Tommy Taylor won't be back for a few more months," said Young.

"So we're definitely looking at a hooker and we definitely want to bring in a back-rower, and we're not far off securing a back-rower.

"And also we're looking for a 10, although that's proving more problematic in finding someone, but we've upped our search for a 10 as well."

Wasps are currently positioned eighth in the Aviva Premiership table after managing to win just two out of the five games this season.

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Aviva Premiership Rugby 2017/18 - Points Table