Wales coach Warren Gatland has taken a big risk in naming his 2019 Rugby World Cup squad.

Gatland has included Cory Hill in his 31-man team for the Japan tournament, despite the lock having not played since February, and currently still recovering from a fractured leg.

Hill, who captained Wales twice last year, isn't expected to be available for the start of the tournament, with Gatland acknowledging the risk, but hoping that he'll be fit for Wales' second game against Australia.

"We felt that it is worth the risk. The initial conversations were that he would be back for Australia or Fiji and I felt that if it was Fiji it might have been too much of a risk.


"Cory this week goes down to Swansea to use an oxygen chamber and is on a plan now where we de-load him for a few weeks," said Gatland.

"They (medical staff) are confident that he will be up and training for that second game against Australia and he is a pretty good athlete, so we are not worried from a conditioning point of view.

"That's why I have said there are some markers that will be put down, hopefully he hits those markers over the next few weeks and we know that we are on track for Australia."

Gatland also made some surprise selections in his final Cup cull, leaving out props Rob Evans and Samson Lee, both of whom were expected to be on the plane to Japan.

However, Gatland explained - in an interesting contrast to Hill - that the pair weren't quite durable enough.

"Rob hasn't trained a lot in the lead up to the warm-up matches. He came in with a shoulder injury, then he's picked a neck injury and a couple of back issues. Rob hadn't played a lot.

"Samson has missed a few campaigns through injury, had a hamstring issue during the campaign. We looked at the durability of the props coming in.

"We are really happy with the final 31, we feel there is an excellent blend to the squad, in terms of talent, experience and age profile and we are all incredibly excited about heading to Japan and what lies ahead."


Wales start their World Cup campaign against Georgia on September 23.

Wales' World Cup Squad


Jake Ball
Adam Beard
Rhys Carre
James Davies
Elliot Dee
Ryan Elias
Tomas Francis
Cory Hill
Alun Wyn Jones
Wyn Jones
Dillon Lewis
Ross Moriarty
Josh Navidi
Ken Owens
Aaron Shingler
Nicky Smith
Justin Tipuric
Aaron Wainwright


Josh Adams
Hallam Amos
Dan Biggar
Aled Davies
Gareth Davies
Jonathan Davies
Leigh Halfpenny
George North
Hadleigh Parkes
Rhys Patchell
Owen Watkin
Tomos Williams
Liam Williams