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Wales lifted by return of Cardiff Blues duo Roberts and Halfpenny

Cardiff Blues duo Jamie Roberts and Leigh Halfpenny hand Wales interim head coach Rob Howley a boost

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Rob Howley is deputising for Warren GatlandPhoto: National Assembly For Wales

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Jamie Roberts is itching to get back into competitive action after handing Wales interim head coach Rob Howley a Six Nations boost with his imminent return from injury.

Roberts and Leigh Halfpenny are, ahead of schedule, set to wear the Cardiff Blues jersey this weekend against Munster.

The duo both picked up injuries, Roberts (elbow) and Halfpenny (neck), during the final game of a forgettable autumn for Wales, the last-gasp defeat against Australia on 1 December.

Originally the pair were feared to be in a race to prove their fitness in time for the Six Nations opener against Ireland on 2 February, however they are in contention for Saturday’s Munster clash.

“It is good to be back after tearing my ligaments in the Australia game but luckily I did not have to have an operation,” Roberts told Wales Online.

“It is just good to be back playing because being out for four or five weeks is frustrating.

“Especially when there is a lot of rugby going on with the Welsh derbies and the Heineken Cup.

“I am fortunate to be back a week early and that is testament to the work of the physios here.

“You get given guidelines and I was looking at six weeks. I have trained hard and it has been difficult watching the team play without you.

“I am raring to go again in what is a really big season. I can’t wait and get back on the field and play again and hopefully stay injury free.”

Blues backs coach Gareth Baber added: “We haven’t seen Jamie or Leigh around for a while but they have both pushed themselves back into contention.

“They are going through some tests this week just to make sure they are given the all-clear.

“But we expect to see them both involved this weekend.”

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