Wales number eight Taulupe Faletau out of Rugby World Cup with broken arm

Taulupe Faletau left the pitch clutching his arm against Georgia. Credit: PA

Wales international Taulupe Faletau has been ruled out of the Rugby World Cup with a broken arm.

The number eight came off the pitch clutching his arm during Wales' final pool match against Georgia.

It comes as a major blow as Wales wait to see who they will face in the quarter-finals next Saturday.

Warren Gatland's side confirmed they will progress to the latter stages of the tournament having topped Pool C with a 43-19 victory over Georgia on Saturday afternoon.

Falatau had worked hard to regain fitness ahead of the World Cup, battling to recover from a calf injury in the build-up to the tournament.

It is not the first time he has suffered a broken arm, coming back from a similar injury in 2018.

But the number eight is not Wales' only injury worry as they progress to the final eight.

Gareth Anscombe, who also battled injury prior to the tournament, was forced from the field during the warm-up with a groin issue. He looked distraught as he left the pitch.

An update is expected on his fitness in the next two or three days, with a nervous wait as medics assess whether he can continue at the World Cup.

Reflecting on the injuries after the match, Warren Gatland said: "Toby has broken his arm so he’ll be out. We’re just going to assess Gareth over the next 72 hours. He’s pulled his groin very high up.

"Talking to the medics, he’s got a bit of power still in his leg which is a positive. It means he’s not pulled it off the bone. We’ll probably know in the next 48-72 hours what we need to do with him. Whether we’ve got for him to recover or replace him directly.

"We’ve got to look at a replacement for Faletau, whether that’s directly as a loose-forward replacement or whether we look at another position."

Referring to Faletau's previous battle for fitness, he said: "It’s tough for him because he pulled his calf and didn’t take a huge part in the camps and pre-season work. That’s why we continued to play him because we felt he gets better game-by-game. We felt he was back to his best.

"He was excellent against Australia with his footwork and carrying, taking kick-offs and giving us go-forward. It's a big loss for us."

Gareth Anscombe is also an injury doubt, with an update expected in two to three days. Credit: PA

Meanwhile, attention turns to the game between Japan and Argentina on Sunday, with the winner likely playing Wales next.

Talking about the upcoming match, Gatland said: “I think tomorrow’s game will be a close game. Argentina and Japan have different styles. It was a tough game for us."

He added: “We’ll watch that game tomorrow. It’s an early kick-off. We go back to Paris this evening. The boys have a day off tomorrow, some recovery, then we head to Marseille on Monday.”