Gloucester's Welsh tight-head prop Gary Powell is ready to bounce back after an injury-hit seven weeks.
The 25 year-old front row man injured his ankle following his last outing for the Kingsholm club in the Powergen Cup win over Leicester at Welford Road in December.
Powell, who trained with the Welsh national squad in the Autumn, injured his ankle joint and ligaments in training the following week and it was estimated he'd be out for a number of weeks.
After seven weeks out injured, Powell is positive that he could be back training soon. Commenting on www.gloucesterrugbyclub.com the tight-head said: "We haven't got a game next week and I'm targeting the following Monday (14 Feb) to return to training."
Powell, who signed for Gloucester from Leeds Tykes in the summer, made a big impact as he took the lead role in the number three shirt, with Phil Vickery missing the early part of the season.
"It's a been a real up-and-down season. I've had a couple of good runs in the team, but that's been combined with this ankle problem. Mentally, it's been very tough, but there is light at the end of the tunnel, thankfully," added Powell.
The call-up to the Welsh training squad was a massive boost to Powell at the end of 2004, and he's determined to get back in the Gloucester shirt and return to the fitness and form that got the attention of his national side's management team.
"First and foremost it's about being part of the rest of the season for Gloucester. I've been really impressed with the set-up at Kingsholm since I arrived in the summer, and you feel like you're part of something here. There's some hard work ahead, but top of the agenda is just getting back to fitness in the Gloucester shirt."
Powell will be supporting his country on Saturday when Wales take on England, and he's optimistic he'll be the one with a smile on his face when he returns to training at Gloucester after the weekend.
"It's going to be close. England have got quite a few new faces, and Wales have a pretty settled side. There's definitely the opportunity for Wales to win. It'd be nice to arrive back at training on Monday with a win for Wales. It would be a big boost for the entire country."
Speaking to the media following the 31-33 West Country Challenge Cup defeat to Exeter Chiefs at the Memorial Stadium, Director of Rugby David Humphreys was full of praise for his side's battling qualities in a bruising encounter but concerned about the injuries picked up.
The West Country Challenge Cup fixture against the Exeter Chiefs at the Memorial Stadium in Bristol on Saturday (kick off 3pm) will be Gloucester's last chance to work on things like new combinations says Director of Rugby, David Humphreys.
Speaking after the 30-21 West Country Challenge Cup defeat at Bath, Director of Rugby David Humphreys spoke of the improvements his team are making as preseason progresses but acknowledges that there is still work to do ahead of the start of the Aviva Premiership.
Speaking to the local media ahead of Saturday's trip to Bath Rugby in the West Country Challenge Cup, front rower Nick Wood spoke of the hard work put in across the extended preseason and highlighted the competition for front row spots in the squad.
Gloucester have named a 30 man squad for the latest round of West Country Challenge Cup action against Bath on Saturday, with Director of Rugby David Humphreys stressing the need to keep an eye on player workload ahead of what will be a long, tough season.
Describing the 50-7 West Country Challenge Cup win over Bath on Sunday as a '...good hit out...', wing Charlie Sharples admitted that it had been a good opportunity to put into practice things that the squad have been trying out in training in recent weeks.
Speaking to the local media after the 50-7 victory over Bath Rugby on Sunday, David Humphreys was happy with his squad's effort, with the most important aspect being the game time earned by his players.
Gloucester make wholesale changes to the side that started at Exeter last Saturday as they prepare to take on Bath at the Memorial Stadium, Bristol on Sunday in the West Country Challenge Cup (kick off 3pm). The Director of Rugby told GRTV that the players are raring to go and that he's looking forward to seeing different combinations in action.