Six Nations 2016: Wales' Tom James needs to sharpen up - Warren Gatland

Tom James (right)
Tom James (right) has two tries in 12 games for Wales - but has so far failed to score in the 2016 Six Nations
Six Nations: Wales v France
Date: Friday, 26 February Venue: Principality Stadium, Cardiff Kick-off: 20:05 GMT
Coverage: Live on BBC One Wales & S4C, commentary on Radio 5 live sports extra, BBC Radio Wales, BBC Radio Cymru & BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app, plus live text commentary.

Wales wing Tom James must work on his sharpness and conditioning to reclaim his starting place, says head coach Warren Gatland.

James, 28, started both Wales' opening Six Nations matches against Ireland and Scotland but failed to score in either.

He has been replaced by fellow Cardiff Blues wing Alex Cuthbert for Friday's match against France.

"He [James] knows himself he's down on sharpness and a bit of conditioning," said Gatland.

"With Tom at the moment we just feel it's an opportunity for him to get back and play some more stuff with the Blues.

"There's a big step up from regional rugby to international rugby.

"From Tom's point of view, the injury he had that kept him out of the World Cup, he's been managed back by the Blues."

Alex Cuthbert
Alex Cuthbert scored for the British and Irish Lions in their opening Test win against Australia in 2013

Former Exeter Chief player James' appearance against Ireland on the opening weekend of the Six Nations was his first for Wales since 2010.

Cuthbert established himself as a first-team fixture for Wales, winning 40 caps and scoring 15 tries.

He lost his place to James after a poor run of form which included a failure to score a try during five matches at the 2015 World Cup.

But the 25-year-old has scored four tries in his last seven appearances for the Blues to reclaim his international berth.

"It's an opportunity for Alex," said Gatland.

"We don't think he's far away from getting back to some form and some confidence."

'Enough cover at centre'

A hamstring injury to Tyler Morgan has added to Wales' concerns at centre, having already lost Cory Allen for the rest of the season to an ankle injury.

But Gatland is does not believe they need to call up any replacements yet.

"Tyler has been a little bit unfortunate. We're hoping that's going to clear up with time," he said.

"We've spoken about potentially bringing in another centre, but at the moment we feel we've got enough cover."

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