Wales v Australia: Wing Cuthbert could be fit - Edwards

Wing Alex Cuthbert
Wing Alex Cuthbert

Defence coach Shaun Edwards says wing Alex Cuthbert could make a shock return to the Wales side to face Australia.

Cuthbert has been with the Wales squad and is being "assessed" by the Wales and Cardiff Blues medical teams.

The British and Irish Lions wing had been expected to miss the whole of the autumn series with an ankle injury picked up playing for Cardiff Blues in the Heineken Cup in October.

"Fingers crossed he could potentially maybe be fit," said Edwards.

Cuthbert has been a prolific try-scorer at international level, crossing nine times in 18 matches for Wales, including two in the 30-3 Six Nations title win against England in March.

But he has missed the three autumn internationals so far, against South Africa, Argentina and Tonga.

He suffered an ankle injury while playing for the Cardiff Blues against Toulon in the Heineken Cup back in October.

Edwards confirmed Cuthbert has been with the Wales squad for the last few weeks, but has not officially been called into the squad.

"Alex Cuthbert is with us and being monitored by the Blues and by us over the last number of weeks," said Edwards.

"We have not officially called him into the squad yet, but he is staying with us and being assessed.

"Fingers crossed he could potentially maybe be fit. We will have to wait and see."

Edwards says Cuthbert's available for selection would be a major boost for Wales.

"You always want your best players fit and Alex is a player who has scored the winning tries in the last two Six Nations," said Edwards.

"So he is a player, if he is fit, we are very interested in being available for selection at the weekend."

Edwards also confirmed that centre Scott Williams (toe) and wing Liam Williams (ribs) are both progressing well in their bids to be fit.

James King of the Ospreys has been added to the squad while the erpignan pair of James Hook and Luke Charteris and Bath prop Paul James have returned to their clubs.