Cardiff Blues could be boosted by the return of Josh Navidi to the matchday 23 for the trip to Ospreys on Saturday as the festive Welsh derbies get underway.
The back rower has been sidelined since October having suffered a hamstring tear in the Rugby World Cup quarter-final win against France, but has returned to full training this week and is now set to be involved at the Liberty Stadium.
It will be a timely boost for head coach John Mulvihill who has had to deal with a slowly lengthening injury list over the last few weeks, with Kris Dacey, Dmitri Arhip, Dillon Lewis, Seb Davies, Rory Thornton, Nick Williams and Aled Summerhill all out alongside long-term absentees Ellis Jenkins, Willis Halaholo and Rhun Williams.
Summerhill is expected to be available for selection again this weekend, as are Corey Domachowski, James Ratti and Josh Adams who all either withdrew from the squad last Saturday, came off early or finished the game heavily strapped up.
Nick Williams is then hoped to be fit again for the visit of Dragons to the Arms Park on Boxing Day, while a number of the shorter term absentees will be back early in the New Year.