Wales head coach Warren Gatland thinks it is unlikely that captain Sam Warburton will feature in the opening game of the Six Nations on February 1.
The 25-year-old has been out with a shoulder injury since November and Ryan Jones led the team through the Autumn internationals in his absence, but Jones has since dropped out of the tournament through injury and now Gatland faces a potential selection headache if Warburton is not fit in time.
Gatland said: "He hasn't had a lot of rugby but he's not going to be too far away, we've discussed that and he feels himself he might need a bit of rugby and it might be a game with the Blues."
Warburton could play a game for Cardiff Blues in the next few weeks in a bid to bring himself back up to fitness in time for the clash with Italy.
Wales will be fighting to retain their Six Nations title for the second time after last years convincing win over England in the final of the competition, and Gatland thinks his team are focused on the task at hand.
He added: "For us it's nice to be able to come into a campaign with a sort of a single focus and the single focus is to do something that's potentially special.
"But it's a really hard tournament to win, we haven't started yet, so it's nice to have that sort of focus right from the start, so there's a huge amount of excitement at the moment and a lot of motivation as well."
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