Cardiff Blues have confirmed that Willis Halaholo suffered an acute anterior cruciate ligament injury during last Saturday’s European Challenge Cup clash with Leicester Tigers.


The centre will undergo surgery next week and will then begin his rehabilitation process with the region’s medical team.

The injury precluded Halaholo from linking up with the Wales squad on Monday for next Saturday clash with the Barbarians in Cardiff. Scott Williams has been called into the squad as his replacement.

New Wales coach Wayne Pivac had named a 35-man squad last week to prepare for his first fixture in charge at the Principality Stadium.

The game isn’t a capped international but Halaholo was one of five players hoping to pull on the red national jersey for the first time, Taine Basham, Shane Lewis-Hughes, Ashton Hewitt and Johnny McNicholl being the other four. 

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Halaholo and McNicholl were not the first players to qualify for a country on residency, but their inclusion in Pivac’s Wales squad didn’t please everyone. 

The Wales squad already has Hadleigh Parkes in it, a player born and raised in New Zealand who moved to Wales in 2014, but the latest inclusion of Blues’ Halaholo and Scarlets’ McNicholl, both of whom are also from New Zealand, proven quite contentious. 

Former Wales and British and Irish Lions international Gavin Henson was one player to speak up about this selection last week, describing it as “so wrong” to his followers on Twitter. 


“Parent or grandparent is totally fine. Residency should only count if they’ve spent a certain amount of time in that country in their childhood.”

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