Sporting Digest: Rugby Union

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Christian Loader, Swansea's Welsh international prop is to have a neck operation this week and will not play again for club or country this season. Loader, capped 19 times, was injured against New Zealand last month. There is no long-term threat to the career of the 24-year- old, who also had to return home early with injury from last summer's tour of North America.

Bath could receive a timely boost with the return from injury of Jeremy Guscott. The gifted centre has set his sights on making a mid-January comeback, which would put him in contention for Bath's Heineken Cup final appointment against the defending champions, Brive, in Bordeaux.