Hughes' joy at reunion of top strikers

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The Independent Online

Mark Hughes will be delighted to welcome back John Hartson and Craig Bellamy for tonight's friendly in Riga against Latvia as his team prepare for their World Cup campaign.

Mark Hughes will be delighted to welcome back John Hartson and Craig Bellamy for tonight's friendly in Riga against Latvia as his team prepare for their World Cup campaign.

Wales' best front partnership have constantly been affected by injuries and have played together in just four of 14 internationals since their masterful double act shot down Italy in Cardiff almost two years ago.

Wales face Azerbaijan and Northern Ireland next month in their opening World Cup qualification games and then turn their attention to England and the clash at Old Trafford in October.

"John [Hartson] has looked very sharp in training and he is very happy that he has recovered from his back operation," Hughes said. "They [Bellamy and Hartson] have had their injury problems, but I have talked to them both since they joined the squad and they are very, very positive.

"Craig is full of confidence. He has a new hairstyle and he looks very happy."

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