Gavin Henson ‘may never return to rugby’
Ospreys coach Sean Holley has raised doubts over the possibility of Welsh international Gavin Henson making a return to professional rugby union after taking a year out.
Henson decided to take a break for the sport after he suffered a catalogue of injuries since 2005 which have left the talented player frustrated.
During the period of respite, Henson hasn’t trained and has subsequently dropped from 14st 7lbs to a mere 11st. Holley has insisted that weeks of conditioning would be required before the player would be ready to compete again at the highest level.
It is believed the club would prefer Henson to return in time for the Heineken Cup quarter finals.
“Gavin has been out for a long time and he would have to ease his way back in,” said Holley. “Rugby changes so quickly these days that it takes time for a player to get back to near where he was after a prolonged absence.”
Holley pointed to the example of Leigh Davies. The Welsh rugby star took a year out but struggled to make a successful return to the game. He failed to ‘get to grips’ with the way the game had evolved in the space of 12 months.
Holley remarked that this case didn’t necessarily indicate Henson was incapable of making a return.
The mental state of the player also seems to be key should if a return is to materialise. Henson would have to once more devote himself to hours in the gym in order to reach the level of fitness required to compete amongst his fellow professionals.
Holley was quick to point out that Henson still has the ‘natural talent’ to compete at the top of the sport.
To date, Henson has represented Wales on 31 occasions and made one appearance for the British and Irish Lions in 2005.