Head Coach Danny Wilson has revealed Sam Warburton is set for his long-awaited comeback against Rugby Calvisano on Friday night at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park (kick-off 7.45pm).
Warburton has been out of action since picking up an ankle injury against Ospreys in November.
But the Wales international – this week named captain of the 6 Nations squad – has declared himself ready to go and Wilson is now set to let his back row star return to the action in the must-win European clash.
“Going on current progress, Sam will be taking part in the game with Calvisano,” said Wilson.
“He needs to just finish off the week’s training, and we are pretty much there with a short turnaround between games. I don’t envisage any issues so he should play against the Italians.
“Sam has been gutted because he is really keen to play all the time for Cardiff Blues. I have learnt very quickly that he wants to be out there.
“We have had to go through the progress and I have to give credit to John Miles (Head of Medical Services) and his team. They have got him back in perfect time, for him especially ahead of schedule. It was quite a nasty injury so it’s good to see him back.
“Sam Hobbs and James Down won’t make this week’s game,” added Wilson. “Both are going through the return to play protocols and we won’t rush them.
“But Gethin Jenkins and Jarrad Hoeata are available for this game and it will be good to see them back on the field.
“We need to build here the ability to get over bumps and knocks by bringing people in and out. Make sure the quality is in every position for injuries and rotation.
“We will mix it up but the spine of the team will be our top players with a few younger guys who deserve an opportunity.”
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