Cardiff issue fitness update ahead of pre-season friendlies

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Cardiff Rugby have provided an injury update ahead of the pre-season campaign getting underway away at Harlequins on Saturday afternoon.

The big news is that flanker James Botham will miss the opening two months of the season after undergoing shoulder surgery over the summer, which will see him miss the first five United Rugby Championship rounds and cast doubts over any involvement in Wales’ Autumn Internationals.

He is aiming for a November return to action, with Cardiff set to travel to South Africa in the final week of that month for games with the Lions and Sharks.

Elsewhere, Ben Thomas has picked up a groin injury and is set to sit out pre-season with the aim of returning during the first five rounds of the campaign, as is Ben Murphy who suffering with a knee problem.

Young backs Luke Scully and Mason Grady remain sidelined by the knee injuries they picked up in the second half of last season, while Josh Navidi and Josh Adams are not due back in training for another two weeks after their exploits with the British and Irish Lions.

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