Halfpenny ruled out of England clash in huge blow for Wales


Wales suffered a major blow ahead of their Six Nations clash with defending champions England as full-back Leigh Halfpenny was ruled out.

British and Irish Lion Halfpenny enjoyed a fine start to the championship, scoring two tries and contributing 24 points in total to a 34-7 thrashing of Scotland in Cardiff.

However, the 29-year-old - one of Wales' most experienced players - was confirmed as an absentee for the England game just over an hour before kick-off on Saturday, with a foot infection the reported reason for his withdrawal.

Gareth Anscombe was drafted in at Halfpenny's expense, with fly-half Rhys Patchell expected to take on kicking duties.

Anscombe's spot among the replacements was taken by Owen Watkin.