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Wales full-back Leigh Halfpenny out for four months with shoulder injury

• Cardiff Blues player will miss South Africa tour
• Halfpenny to undergo surgery to his right shoulder on Friday

Leigh Halfpenny is set to miss Wales' South Africa tour this summer because of a shoulder injury.

The Welsh Rugby Union confirmed that Halfpenny will undergo surgery on Friday on the right shoulder he dislocated during last Sunday's 29-18 Six Nations defeat against England at Twickenham.

The WRU say the Cardiff Blues full-back is expected to be out "for up to four months". A statement read: "Wales and Cardiff Blues full-back Leigh Halfpenny, who dislocated his right shoulder against England on Sunday, will undergo surgery tomorrow [Friday]. He is expected to be out for up to four months."

Halfpenny kicked all Wales' points at Twickenham, but was hurt when he pulled off a try-saving tackle on England centre Luther Burrell during the second period.

He has been replaced in the starting line-up for Saturday's Millennium Stadium clash against Scotland by Scarlets back Liam Williams.

Wales head to South Africa in June for Test match appointments with the Springboks in Durban on 14 June and Nelspruit seven days later.

But it seems they will be without their star performer of the last 12 months, who has also played his last game for the Blues as he will head to wealthy French club Toulon this summer.

Halfpenny, 25, won a host of awards last year, including Six Nations player of the tournament and player of the series when the British and Irish Lions claimed a 2-1 victory over Australia Down Under.

He also won the BBC Wales Sports Personality of the year and was runner-up behind Andy Murray in the BBC Sports Personality of the Year.

The WRU also confirmed that scrum-half Rhys Webb, who went off with an ankle injury at Twickenham, has been released from the national squad and will continue to be assessed by the Ospreys medical team.

Mike Phillips will replace Webb in the team to face Scotland. In total, Warren Gatland has made six changes to the side that lost at Twickenham last Sunday.


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