Ellis Jenkins remains hopeful he can feature for Wales at next year's Rugby World Cup in Japan as he waits to learn of the extent of his knee injury.

The flanker was injured late on in his country's 20-11 victory over South Africa in Cardiff on Saturday when Wales made it nine successive Test victories for the first time this century.

Jenkins was voted man-of-the-match but left the field after full-time on a stretcher, with coach Warren Gatland fearing he had damaged his anterior cruciate ligament.

The 25-year-old had a scan on Monday and will learn his recovery timetable after meeting a specialist next week, but returning in time for the start of the Rugby World Cup next September is his objective.

"I've been for a scan so [I'm] just waiting to see a specialist next week then go from there," he told Wales Online.

"We all know what's happening at the end of this season and that's still my goal at the moment until someone tells me otherwise.

"I want to be back as quick as possible, playing as soon as possible and back playing well. That's my goal at the moment.

"I've been trying to keep my knee moving and get the swelling down.

"If I need surgery I need to keep the swelling to a minimum otherwise it just delays the process."

Bath have revealed Taulupe Faletau, another Wales back-rower, is expected to return from his broken arm in mid-December having missed the recent internationals.

Wales flanker Ellis Jenkins looks certain to miss the Six Nations after sustaining a suspected anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury against South Africa.

Jenkins put in a man-of-the-match performance as Wales earned a 20-11 victory at the Principality Stadium to make it nine straight Test wins for the first time this century.

However, the match finished with an almost sombre atmosphere in the stands as Jenkins – who was a late call into the starting line-up due to an elbow injury for Dan Lydiate – received medical attention in the closing stages.

Jenkins will have a scan on Monday but is now unlikely to return for the Six Nations, which starts in February, while he could also be a fitness doubt for next year's Rugby World Cup in Japan.

"I don't know how he is. There will be a scan on Monday. It looks like an ACL which is not brilliant," head coach Warren Gatland said after the game.

"He's very disappointed. His performance was outstanding. Before the game, I had a one-on-one with him. I thought he was excellent.

"I thought today was an outstanding performance and he deserved Man of the Match. You have to really feel for him.

"When anyone gets injured it's the hardest thing to take. You know it's a big year for a lot of players and they work so hard.

"He was co-captain on the summer tour and he did a great job.

"When you see a player who has worked hard to win his spot and get in the team, pick up an injury, you feel for him."

On Wales' overall performance, Gatland believes his team are still a work in progress despite their terrific run.

"It was the toughest game we've played this autumn. There are aspects we need to challenge the players on and challenge themselves technically," he added.

"They can go away with their regions and get away with things, but when you play the best teams in the world you can get exposed.

"There is some game management we can improve. The good thing with these guys is they can dig themselves into a hole and then get out of it.

"We're in a good place at the moment. I don't think we've lost at home this year. That's a nice feeling in the changing rooms. But we know there's a lot of work to do."

Alun Wyn Jones hailed the strength in depth at Wales' disposal after they defeated South Africa 20-11 to complete a clean sweep during the November Internationals.

Warren Gatland's side stretched their winning streak in all Tests to nine, the first time Wales have achieved such a run this century, as early tries from Tomas Francis and Liam Williams proved crucial in beating the Springboks.

Captain Jones believes the impressive return in results is down to the team's character and welcomed the amount of options available to head coach Gatland.

"The effort put into it is the habit, we're very pleased with all the Ws, there are patches we have to work on but the character is the most pleasing thing," he told BBC Sport.

"We can't deny there's a bit of depth developing, credit to the whole squad that have supported each other through the four Tests."

It was a landmark 120th cap for Wyn Jones, who was keen to downplay his own achievement in favour of praising the collective team effort.

"It's just another game for myself, but the depth we have and the amount of people putting their hands up, there's still a few guys injured," he added.

"It's hard to put into words having been involved in autumns that haven't been quite as successful."

Opposing captain Siya Kolisi credited Wales for their game plan and reflected on a November tour that saw South Africa win two of their four matches.

"It was really tough, we played a lot of rugby in our half which was what they wanted. Every time we got into their half we gave away penalties, which made it really tough," he said.

"They were really smart and did well. Credit to Jonesy and his team.

"I am happy [with the November games] but there is still a lot to do. A lot of positives we can take."

Wales have recorded nine consecutive wins for the first time this century after two early tries helped them overcome South Africa 20-11 at the Principality Stadium.

Tomas Francis and Liam Williams crossed in the opening 15 minutes to give Wales the ascendancy and a 14-3 half-time lead in Cardiff.

South Africa fought back in the second period, with Jesse Kriel going over for their only try, but Dan Biggar's two late penalties ensured the Welsh held on for their fourth straight home success over the Springboks.

Since losing to Ireland back in February, Warren Gatland's men have been victorious in each of their nine contests, a sequence the nation had not managed since winning 10 in a row in 1999.

The Springboks were forced into a pre-match change as Cheslin Kolbe replaced Sbu Nkosi on the wing.

The number 23 made a lively start too, dancing to the edge of the Welsh 22 with some nifty footwork before South Africa switched their attack to the left, where Pieter-Steph du Toit just stepped into touch prior to going in.

It was Wales who would put the first points on the board, though, Ellis Jenkins bamboozling Malcolm Marx with a dummy and offloading to Francis to score his first international try.

Six minutes later the Welsh were in again as the presence of George North sucked in the South African backs after a scrum to leave space for full-back Williams to dot down.

A long-range Handre Pollard penalty reduced the deficit, but he was off target with another three-point attempt, as was Gareth Anscombe with an effort that came back off a post.

Wales' advantage remained 11 points at the break, with Jenkins holding up Kriel over the line – a decision confirmed by the TMO – before South Africa's decision to take the scrum five metres from the Welsh line failed to pay dividends.

However, sustained South African pressure at the start of the second period did pay off when Willie le Roux's terrific pass allowed Kriel to cross for a try that Pollard failed to add the extras to.

The Springboks continued to look the better side after the interval and with 18 minutes to go they were only three points behind when Elton Jantjies slotted over a kick.

Yet Gatland's team were awarded a crucial penalty when Justin Tipuric won a turnover inside South Africa's 22, with replacement Biggar keeping his cool to stretch Wales' lead to six.

That soon became nine, their eventual margin of victory, as Biggar made it two from two after South Africa were caught offside following a big Jonathan Davies break.

The only negative for the Welsh was the sight of man-of-the-match Jenkins coming off on a stretcher after the final whistle.

South Africa have named an unchanged line-up for the final match of their European tour against Wales after captain Siya Kolisi avoided disciplinary action for an apparent headbutt in last weekend's win over Scotland.

Wales have returned to a tried and tested formula for their final November international against South Africa, with just one alteration from the side that defeated Australia a fortnight ago.

Head coach Warren Gatland made 14 changes for last weekend's 74-24 thrashing of Tonga, but the team that ended a decade-long wait for a win over the Wallabies has been rewarded for the clash against the Springboks.

Liam Williams, who won a 50th Test cap last time out, is the only survivor in the starting XV from the Tonga game and will start at full-back in place of Leigh Halfpenny, who misses Wales' last contest of 2018 due to concussion.

Gareth Anscombe wins the battle for the fly-half jersey, meaning Dan Biggar must make do with a spot among the replacements.

"We have rewarded the team that faced Australia with another start this weekend," Gatland said ahead of Saturday's contest at the Principality Stadium.

"Leigh misses out with concussion, but it's a great opportunity for Liam at full-back.

"We are really pleased with how the bench has gone in the first three games so we will be looking for that impact again on Saturday.

"There were a lot of tough selection calls, but that is what we want. The team that played last week was hugely impressive and there are some disappointed boys who miss out.

"We want to end the campaign with a big performance against a very good South African side."

Wales are on an eight-match winning run in Tests and are aiming for a third consecutive victory over South Africa.

 

Wales: Liam Williams, George North, Jonathan Davies, Hadleigh Parkes, Josh Adams, Gareth Anscombe, Gareth Davies; Nicky Smith, Ken Owens, Tomas Francis, Adam Beard, Alun Wyn Jones (captain), Dan Lydiate, Justin Tipuric, Ross Moriarty.

Replacements: Elliot Dee, Rob Evans, Dillon Lewis, Cory Hill, Ellis Jenkins, Tomos Williams, Dan Biggar, Owen Watkin.

France will wear rainbow laces in their match against Fiji on Saturday in support of Wales great Gareth Thomas, who was attacked in Cardiff last weekend.

Thomas – capped 100 times by Wales – claimed to have been targeted for his sexuality following his country's 74-24 win against Tonga.

South Wales Police subsequently confirmed a 16-year-old boy had admitted assaulting Thomas and would be dealt with through restorative justice at the former player's request.

French Rugby Federation vice-president Serge Simon has now revealed that France will sport the multicoloured laces in solidarity with Thomas, who won the 2005 Heineken Cup final with Toulouse.

"Dear Gareth Thomas. All of French Rugby is with you regarding the homophobic [assault] you've been victim of," Simon tweeted.

"To show our support, the French rugby players will wear a rainbow shoe lace during the France-Fiji game on Saturday night.

"We're all in with you in this matter."

Ryan Giggs said his Wales side let themselves down during the 1-0 defeat to Albania in Chris Gunter's landmark game.

Chris Gunter became Wales' most-capped player in Elbasan on Tuesday but Ryan Giggs' side could not mark the occasion with victory as they were beaten 1-0 by Albania.

Gunter made his international bow in 2007 and the goalless friendly saw him go past Neville Southall with 93 caps, a tally the 29-year-old could significantly add to before the end of his career.

A celebratory night in Cardiff might have a better way for the full-back to separate given there was very little to cheer for those fans who had made the journey. 

Sam Vokes missed two glorious chances for Wales either side of the break and they proved costly as Bekim Balaj secured victory for Albania with a 58th-minute penalty.

Gunter's landmark night saw Wales make a positive start but finding a way through the Albanian defence proved harder than Scotland had found three days earlier.

Lively attacking duo David Brooks and Harry Wilson looked the most likely to threaten Etrit Berisha's goal, with the latter wasting Wales' best opportunity with a long-range free kick that drifted wide.

Taulant Xhaka was lucky to stay on the pitch just before the break as he appeared to move his head towards Brooks', but the officials only showed him a yellow card.

A flowing move – started by Wilson – eventually saw Joe Allen play in Vokes, but his low shot was easily saved by the alert ​Berisha.

Vokes failed again just after the restart as he proved unable to turn in Tom Lockyer's header from a yard out, the Burnley striker somehow finding the hands of the goalkeeper.

Despite dominating, Wales found themselves behind just before the hour when Wilson was adjudged to have pulled back Xhaka in the penalty area. Balaj made no mistake from 12 yards.

Even the introduction of Aaron Ramsey and Gareth Bale could not turn Wales' fortunes around as Giggs's men ended 2018 with back-to-back defeats.

 

What does it mean? Miserable end to Giggs' first year

Since succeeding Chris Coleman in January, Giggs has overseen only three wins from nine matches, losing four of the last five. Added to that, Wales also failed to earn promotion from the Nations League as they finished second in their group with Denmark and the Republic of Ireland.

Wasteful Vokes costs Wales

Vokes' poor form in front of goal for Wales continued after he failed to add to the three strikes he has to his name this year. Twice he should have beaten Berisha but unerringly found the keeper.

Xhaka's a lucky boy

It may have been a friendly but Xhaka was fortunate not to see red after clashing with Brooks, the midfielder pulling his rivals leg before appearing to headbutt the Bournemouth man.

What's next

With the next international break in March, both managers will have time to assess their options ahead of the European Championship qualifiers.

Leigh Halfpenny has been ruled out of Wales' clash with South Africa this weekend after failing to recover from concussion.

The full-back sustained the issue in a tackle by Samu Kerevi during a 9-6 victory over Australia on November 10.

After sitting out last Saturday's 74-24 victory over Tonga, Halfpenny showed signs in training this week that he is yet to fully bounce back from the issue, with Hallam Amos now added to the squad as cover.

"Leigh is out," said assistant coach Rob Howley. "He did some training on Saturday morning and was feeling a little bit light-headed. Only common sense.

"George North was back in full training this morning and is available.

"From a back three perspective it gives us an opportunity to look at others.

"Liam Williams has played at full-back, Gareth Anscombe has stepped up there and Hallam Amos has played there."

Including Anscombe at 15 could go some way to solving a growing fly-half selection headache for Warren Gatland, with Dan Biggar having put in a man-of-the-match display when given his chance against Tonga.

"Everyone has debated 10 in Welsh rugby for so many years and that will never change," added Howley.

"It comes down to the skill set and collective cohesion. Gareth Anscombe played particularly well against Australia and Dan was exceptional against Tonga.

"We were very clinical."

South Wales Police have confirmed that a 16-year-old boy has admitted assaulting Wales rugby legend Gareth Thomas on Saturday.

Former British and Irish Lion Thomas, capped 100 times by his country, posted a video on Twitter stating that he had been subjected to a homophobic attack in the Welsh capital.

Thomas thanked police after he requested the teenager was dealt with by way of restorative justice so he could "learn more than any other way" following what he described as "a hate crime for my sexuality".

South Wales Police later stated: "We are aware that a video has been posted on social media by former rugby international Gareth Thomas in relation to a hate crime which happened on The Hayes in Cardiff city centre.

"We can confirm a local 16-year-old boy was dealt through restorative justice following the incident at around 9pm.

"Restorative justice was at the request of Mr Thomas and accepted by the teenager who admitted assault and was apologetic for his actions.

"Restorative justice is about putting victim needs at the centre of the criminal justice system, finding positive solutions to crime and encouraging young people to be accountable for the consequences of their actions."

Wales rugby legend Gareth Thomas says he was the victim of a homophobic attack in Cardiff on Saturday.

Thomas, who was capped 100 times by his country and played three Tests for the British and Irish Lions, posted a video on Twitter in which he claimed to have been targeted for his sexuality.

Wales had beaten Tonga 74-24 in the city earlier in the day.

"Last night I was the victim in my home city of a hate crime for my sexuality," said Thomas, sporting cuts and bruises to his face.

"I want to say thank you to the police who were involved and were very helpful and allowed me to do restorative justice with the people who did this, because I feel they could learn more that way than any other way.

"And also to the people of Cardiff, who supported me and helped me.

"There's a lot of people out there who want to hurt us but, unfortunately for them, there's a lot more that want to help us heal."

Chris Gunter hopes Gareth Bale can help his family make it to Albania to watch him make history for Wales on Tuesday.

The Reading defender equalled Neville Southall's national record of 92 caps when he came on as a first-half substitute during the 2-1 Nations League defeat to Denmark on Friday.

Wales boss Ryan Giggs confirmed after the fixture in Cardiff that Gunter will start the friendly against Albania, paving the way for the 29-year-old to move clear at the summit on the all-time list of appearances.

With the hope of getting his loved ones to Elbasan in time to witness the occasion, Gunter revealed his plan to ask Real Madrid star Bale for a helping hand with the travel arrangements.

"It will be a special night," Gunter said. "I am going to ask Gaz [Bale] if I can borrow his plane to get some people over. If it is free I am sure they will.

"I am trying to get some family over there. It is not the easiest place to get to but if the Welsh fans can then I am sure I can find a way to get some people over.

"There are people from my family who have watched every single game of mine, whether live or on television.

"I know they will be watching wherever and it will be a special night and hopefully we can get a result so I can enjoy it with a win."

Gunter moved level with goalkeeper Southall when coming on to replace the injured Paul Dummett.

His record-breaking moment will now come on the road rather than in front of a home crowd, yet the versatile full-back believes it is fitting to achieve the milestone in front of Wales' loyal band of travelling supporters.

"If I can do it on Tuesday I think it would be fitting in a way because it would be in front of people who have probably been to far and wide places where I have picked up a lot of my caps," he added.

"If I could do it in front of those who spend their hard-earned money getting to all those places it would be a huge honour in terms of them being able to see in a place where no one thought it would ever happen."

Dummett and fellow defender James Chester - who was withdrawn due to injury early in the second half at the Cardiff City Stadium - will not be involved against Albania.

Wales cruised to an ultimately comfortable 74-24 victory over Tonga on Saturday, although they were briefly made to sweat by the Pacific Islanders.

Three tries in the first 11 minutes - including one for Liam Williams, winning his 50th cap - saw the much-changed hosts threaten to run away with the match.

But Tonga regrouped and managed to drag themselves back from 24-3 down to pull level early in the second half, having earlier seen a try disallowed for a knock on.

From that point, however, it was all Wales.

Steff Evans, Tomos Williams, Tyler Morgan, Cory Hill, Aled Davies and Rhys Patchell all touched down before Liam Williams marked his big day with a second try.

Dan Biggar - back in the side having lost the number 10 shirt to Gareth Anscombe for last weekend's victory over Australia - contributed 19 points, including 14 from the tee, to give coach Warren Gatland a selection headache ahead of next weekend's visit of South Africa.

The result extends Wales' winning run to seven matches at home. Only once since 1978 have they enjoyed a longer such run - nine games between 1997 and 1999.

Ryan Giggs declared his pride at Wales' performance despite going down to a 2-1 defeat against an "efficient" Denmark.

Goals from Nicolai Jorgensen and Martin Braithwaite secured Denmark promotion to the top tier of the Nations League as they completed the double over their Group 4 opponents.

Wales did pull one back through Gareth Bale during a dramatic conclusion, the Real Madrid forward finding the net just 84 seconds after Braithwaite had made it 2-0, but the hosts came up short in Cardiff.

Despite the disappointing result, Giggs was able to look back positively on his young team's campaign in the new competition, even though they missed out on clinching a place in League A.

"I thought it was an exciting game, two evenly matched teams, chances wise. Maybe we even pipped it," the former Manchester United player told Sky Sports.

"We came up against a good side, efficient and good at what they do. They win games and get the job done.

"I said to the lads that I'm proud of them. They kept going until the end, exciting me and exciting the crowd.

"You see David Brooks taking players on and it's exciting, but we need to learn the other side, the discipline that Denmark are so good at.

"They've been together a long time and are a difficult team to beat. Overall, considering the two games, there was not a lot to choose between us."

Wales had their chances to take the lead in the first half, Bale and James Chester both failing to hit the target with headers, before Jorgensen finished off a rapid counter to put Denmark 1-0 up.

Giggs admitted the opening goal was crucial in the contest, particularly as it gave the visitors something to cling onto after the interval.

"They don't give away many goals, so when they go a goal ahead they very rarely give away the game. They fall back into their shape and are disciplined," Giggs added.

"Up until then, though, it was even. We had a few headers go just past the post and a couple of injuries, so things didn't go our way.

"But we were still in the game until the end."

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.