Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend will be a worried man after one of his star players suffered a suspected broken hand during Edinburgh’s Champions Cup match against Montpellier on Friday night.
Watson left the field before the half-hour mark and after the match Edinburgh head coach Richard Cockerill explained that the injury did not look too good.
Richard Cockerill tells us it looks like Hamish Watson has broken his hand. Another back rower potentially lost to Gregor Townsend with the 6N a fortnight away.
— Nick Mullins (@andNickMullins) January 18, 2019
“It looks like he may well have broken his hand,” Cockerill told BBC Scotland.
“We don’t know yet, we will have to see.”
However, if Watson’s injury is a suspected fractured metacarpal bone, his recovery time could allow him to partake in the Six Nations sooner than many might think. Normal recovery time for such an injury is six to eight weeks, but depending on the severity of the break and how quick a healer he is, the openside could potentially be back playing in under a month.
This is a precedent in rugby for a quick return from such an injury.
Former Ireland international Tommy Bowe sustained a fracture of his second metacarpal – the long bone in his hand – during the Lions tour of South Africa in 2009. Bowe saw a specialist in Australia and had pins inserted into his hand, which it was believed would lower his recovery time to four weeks.
Miraculously, Bowe returned to full training just two weeks after breaking it.
It is yet to be seen if Watson has broken his hand and if so, to what extent.
The 27-year-old has been in fine form for Scotland over the last two seasons and his potential absence will be a major blow for Townsend’s team during this year’s Six Nations tournament.
Scotland start their Six Nations campaign against Italy in a fortnight on February 2.
Sign up to our mailing list for a weekly digest from the wide world of rugby.Sign Up Now