Six Nations

Wales' Williams and Amos released to regions for weekend fixtures

Wales have released versatile backs Liam Williams and Hallam Amos to their regions for this weekend's Pro12 fixtures, but captain Sam Warburton will stay with the rest of Warren Gatland's Six Nations squad.

Williams, who can play at winger or full-back, is set to make his first appearance since sustaining a foot injury at the Rugby World Cup when Scarlets take on Connacht in a bid to boost his fitness.

Amos, who suffered a shoulder injury playing against England at the World Cup, is to play in Dragons' Pro12 fixture against Leinster.

Skipper Warburton has played just once since November after sustaining ankle ligament damage and was expected to play in Cardiff Blues' contest against Edinburgh, but head Gatland has opted not to release him.

Warburton, speaking at the Six Nations launch on Wednesday, had suggested that playing for Cardiff was a possibility.

"At the end of November I just went over on my [right] ankle and ended up rupturing one of the ligaments, so I was a little bit worried. I think I just missed having an operation, which was good news," he said.

"I got back and played Calvisano in our last European game a couple of weekends ago and if there's an opportunity with the Blues then I'll just jump back and sharpen the tools there. So [I'm] back fit."

Wales were badly ravaged by injury at the World Cup, with the likes of Leigh Halfpenny and Rhys Webb joining Williams and Amos on the sidelines.

But Warburton feels the squad is looking a lot healthier ahead of the Six Nations.

"There's a few guys who have sort of been pushing it quite close, but luckily now coming into the squad there's only a few guys we're missing: Leigh Halfpenny, Rhys Webb, those guys with the real serious injuries, Scott Williams as well," he added.

"Apart from those three, it's a pretty good squad."

Wales start their Six Nations campaign at champions Ireland on February 7.