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Lane targets return... when rugby returns

First Team News | 9th June 2020

Owen Lane hopes to be fit and firing for the resumption of rugby - whenever that may be.

The star wing suffered a significant hamstring injury in training ahead of the Six Nations, which required surgery and an extended period on the sidelines.

With the Coronavirus pandemic wreaking havoc in the world of sport, all rugby has been suspended and Lane has been training and rehabbing by himself since the beginning of April.

It is still unknown when the professional game might return and Lane is still not fully recovered, however speaking to Engage Sports, he revealed he hopes to be back and available when the time comes.

He said: “It’s a bit different for me because I got injured just before the Six Nations when I tore my hamstring. 

“I’m still rehabbing that injury, I’m still not 100 per cent and that’s my main goal. I am just thinking about how i get myself back fit and to a position that if we do go back to training, I would also be able to train fully and be available for selection.”

Cardiff Blues players and the vast majority of staff have been furloughed since April, with the country also spending two months in lockdown.

It has undoubtedly been a difficult period for many but Lane, who recently moved back to his parents while he renovates a property, takes the positives.

He continued: “I am lucky in that I’m at my parents, there’s the garden and I can go outside and do my rehab. 

“I know it is tough for people who can’t go outside when the weather has been like this but for me it’s been quite easy. In a weird way it’s taken the stress off the injury and the timescale and it’s allowed me to be a bit more reserved in my rehab and laid-back in my approach”

It is a very different set of circumstances to this time last year when Lane was preparing to begin training in Wales’ notoriously tough World Cup training camps.

Typically for Lane, who has been hit by injuries in the most untimely manner, it was another rollercoaster journey but it is one he reflects on fondly.

He added: "That was definitely the toughest 10 weeks I’ve had. They are brutal and physically demanding. It would mirror a normal week but the training intensity was 10 times higher than anything i’ve ever done in my life. 

“Then when we went to Switzerland and you’re at altitude, Turkey in the heat- I definitely shifted a few pounds and that was probably the fittest i’ve ever been.

“At the end of that I was lucky to get the reward of playing against Ireland, that was my first cap but then the disappointment the day after of not being selected for the World Cup squad. 

“Within the space of 24-48 hours I had the highlight of my career and I was over the moon to the biggest set-back.”

Lane watched on from home as Wales fought on the world stage and was back with Cardiff Blues when he got the call-up as an injury replacement.

He jetted out to Japan ahead of the semi-final and faced New Zealand in the third-fourth play-off following defeat to eventual winners South Africa.

“We only trained twice leading up to the New Zealand game, obviously the boys had the big disappointment in the semi-final, their whole campaign had led up to that point. 

“But lucky enough I got my shot in that third-fourth play-off and I got my second cap against the All Blacks. 

“It was quite strange, going back to my first cap I shared that with Rhys Carré, we’ve known each other since we were 10-11, we’ve played with each other throughout the age-grades, the Blues and schools rugby so to play together for the first time was pretty amazing. It just made the occasion even more special.”