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Wales star Dan Lydiate eases fears with defiant message after surgery on damaged knee

Dan Lydiate has eased fears for his future by pledging to make it back from the devastating knee injury that’s ruined his season.

The blindside flanker had defied the odds to reclaim his Wales position after a two-year absence at the age of 33.

But he lasted only 13 minutes in the Six Nations clash against Ireland before leaving the field with ligament damage that will keep him out for the rest of the campaign.

There were even fears in the immediate aftermath that the anterior cruciate ligament problem Lydiate sustained might lead to one of Welsh rugby’s most popular players calling time on his playing career.

But he has since undergone surgery and felt able to tell his 142,000 followers on Twitter that he plans to return to rugby.

His post runs: “Op done on acl. Just want to thank everyone for their kind messages over the last few weeks. On the road to recovery now and as Arnie famously once said: ‘I’ll be back’ # chopper.”

The news will be particularly well received by the Ospreys.

Welsh rugby’s tackling king had won the supporters’ player-of-season award for 2019-20 at the Liberty Stadium region and been to the fore over the first half of the current campaign.

Wayne Pivac saw him as the form six in the Guinness PRO14 and Lydiate started strongly against Ireland, making seven tackles in the opening 10 minutes before fate cruelly intervened.



Dan Lydiate of Wales receives treatment for his injury

News of his defiant stance and determination to make a comeback will cheer his Ospreys team boss, with Toby Booth saying at the region’s weekly press call, after being asked if he felt Lydiate would return: “It depends on the individual and the mindset of the person — in tennis you’ve seen Serena Williams trying to win her 24th Grand Slam at nearly 40.

“I’m sure there was stuff written about Dan Lydiate when he was out of the international arena a few years back.

“He’s had a choice.

“I hope we’ve created an environment that he really wants to thrive in and be in. He’s the fittest he’s ever been and he’s making 30 tackles a game, so it really depends on Dan.

“If he can’t play for medical reasons then that’s a different scenario.

“But I can assure you the mind is certainly willing.

“All the time the mind is willing and the body is able, Dan Lydiate will play for the Ospreys.”

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