Rugby World Cup 2011: Injury worries ease for Wales coach Gatland

Rugby World Cup 2011 semi-finals: Wales v France

Venue:
Eden Park, Auckland
Date:
Saturday, 15 October
Kick-off:
0900 BST/ 2100 NZ
Coverage:
Live text commentary, scores and report on BBC website; updates on BBC Radio Wales and BBC Radio 5 live; watch live on ITV1, ITV Wales & S4C (Welsh language), live commentary on BBC Radio Cymru (Welsh language) & TalkSport radio
Rhys Priestland
Rhys Priestland kicked two conversions and a penalty against Ireland

Wales coach Warren Gatland is likely to have another fully fit squad to choose from for their World Cup semi-final against France in Auckland on Saturday.

Wales assistant coach Robert Howley said concerns over shoulder-injury victims Rhys Priestland and Luke Charteris have eased.

Priestland left the 22-10 quarter-final win over Ireland in the 77th minute and lock Charteris did so at the break.

"They are both expected to be fine," said Howley.

Centre Jamie Roberts' nose injury is also not a major concern ahead of the clash at Eden Park. It is bruised not broken.

Priestland's arm was in a sling when Wales arrived in Auckland to find themselves sharing a hotel with their French rivals for a night.

James Hook took over from Priestland in Wellington and Stephen Jones also remains a contender to wear the number 10 jersey.

Charteris was replaced at half-time by Bradley Davies after making 16 first-half tackles against Ireland.

But the Dragons lock does not seem to concerned by the injury.

"[It's a] bit sore but it's recovering pretty well so fingers crossed it will be good to go in the next few days," said Charteris.

"I've been getting physio. Lucky enough the last few days have been recovery and travelling up here [to Auckland] so I haven't missed out on much."

Medical student Roberts, of Cardiff Blues, received treatment during the bruising contest in which his forceful running proved effective, but is unlikely to be a major selection concern.

Wales are set to name their team on Thursday, while France are expected to announce their line-up on Tuedsday.

Wales have made the last four only once - at the inaugural tournament in 1987.

They lost 48-6 to eventual winners New Zealand in the semi-finals, but went on to finish third by beating Australia 22-21 in the play-off in Rotorua.

Ireland's Alain Rolland has been appointed to referee the Wales-France clash.

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