Wales centre Owen Williams suffered "a significant injury to his cervical vertebrae and spinal cord" during a tournament in Singapore, his club Cardiff Blues have confirmed. The 22-year-old is being treated in a Singapore hospital after getting hurt while playing for the Blues in the inaugural World Club 10s tournament on Sunday.
He has undergone surgery to stabilise the fracture and arrangements are being made to transfer him home at an appropriate time. His parents flew out to visit him on Tuesday amid fears about the severity of the injury.
Wales captain Sam Warburton admitted that the injury was a "scary" reminder of rugby's dangers. Warburton has trained alongside the talented three-quarter at regional and international level and, along with all his team-mates, has his fingers crossed that Williams will make a full recovery.
It is scary, because it is not like it was a malicious tackle, or anything like that," Warburton said.
"It was a freak accident and it does make you wonder about prioritising the important things in life. It does worry you when it comes to playing rugby.
"Owen is someone I have trained with day in, day out over the last five years and physically he is a specimen, an amazing athlete. We have got our fingers crossed."
Meanwhile, Wales prop Samson Lee will miss the first three weeks of next season after being given a five-week ban for a headbutt. The 21-year-old Scarlets forward was cited for striking South Africa lock Flip van der Merwe with his head during the second half of Wales' 31-30 defeat to South Africa last Saturday.