Cardiff — Wales’ first-choice full-back Leigh Halfpenny has been named in the country’s Six Nations squad despite a battle with concussion that has ruled him out of their opening match against France in Paris on February 1. The 30-year-old — capped 80 times — has been struggling with the head injury since he took a hefty late tackle playing against Australia on November 10 but has been picked for an enlarged squad that will be pruned down to a matchday 23 next Tuesday. Wayne Pivac, Halfpenny’s coach at his Pro14 side Scarlets, warned last week that a specialist had said he would be out for three to five weeks, which would also rule him out of Wales’ following match against Italy just over a week later. This has not stopped head coach Warren Gatland from selecting him for what will be the New Zealander’s final Six Nations, as he will step down after this year’s World Cup in Japan. But, conceding Halfpenny will only feature in his squad if he is fully fit, Gatland said: “We will make ...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, ProfileData financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Times Select.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now