Matthew Rees hopes to resume career after cancer treatment

Matthew Rees
Matthew Rees

Hooker Matthew Rees is hoping to resume his rugby career after he has completed his cancer treatment.

The former Wales captain was diagnosed with testicular cancer back in October and faces a spell away from the game.

Rees, 32, the Cardiff Blues captain, is undergoing treatment at the Velindre Cancer Centre external-linkin Cardiff.

"That is something I have in the back of my mind, getting back before the end of the season," said Rees, who has won 58 Wales caps.

"But with this sort of diagnosis, I have to take one day at a time and see how it goes but, hopefully, I will be back sooner rather than later.

Rees made his Wales debut in 2005 and became a British and Irish Lions Test player on the 2009 South Africa tour.

He skippered Wales during the 2011 Six Nations Championship, but missed the World Cup in New Zealand later that year due to a neck injury.

The ex-British and Irish Lions hooker, who joined Blues from Scarlets in the summer.

Tonyrefail-born Rees was a late withdrawal from the Blues team ahead of their 19-15 Heineken Cup win over Toulon on 19 October.

"It has been a tough six weeks," said Rees.

"I have had the operation and am now waiting for the results of the biopsy.

"It has been hard, but I am staying positive and I have finished my first cycle of treatment and start my second next week.

"I am in a positive frame of mind at the moment."

He played 182 times for the Scarlets after joining the region in the 2004-05 season and was famously part of the all-Welsh front row, along with props Gethin Jenkins and Adam Jones, on the Lions tour of South Africa in June 2009.

Rees previously played for Treorchy, Pontypridd and the now defunct Celtic Warriors and became Wales' 128th captain when given the role against Australia in November 2010.

But he struggled to hold down a first-team place at Parc y Scarlets after missing out on Wales' World Cup campaign in 2011 through injury and departed for the Blues at the end of last season.

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