Henson still on comeback trail
Gavin Henson could make his comeback against France, despite his "regrettable behaviour" at the weekend.
Last Updated: 20/02/09 10:15am
Gavin Henson could make his comeback in the RBS Six Nations match against France, despite having to apologise for his behaviour whilst celebrating Wales' victory over England.
The centre and three of his Wales squad colleagues - forwards Andy Powell, Jonathan Thomas and Rhys Thomas - were cautioned by head coach Warren Gatland and team manager Alan Phillips earlier this week.
The quartet admitted what the Welsh Rugby Union termed "varying degrees of regrettable conduct" in a Cardiff bar on Sunday.
Henson, who has not played Test rugby since Wales sealed their Grand Slam against France last March, was selected for their opener against Scotland just under a fortnight ago.
However, a calf muscle injury ultimately ruled him out and the Ospreys star also missed last Saturday's 23-15 win against England.
Gatland names his side on Monday and might be unwilling to break up the in-form midfield pairing of Jamie Roberts and Tom Shanklin.
However, Henson looks likely to be available for selection and could be named as a replacement.
Reflecting on Sunday's episode, Phillips said: "We had managed things well on Saturday night as a team.
"We didn't stop anyone having a few beers in a controlled environment to celebrate the win, because there were two weeks to the next game.
"There was no need for anyone to be out on Sunday.
"We were disappointed, to say the least. We should have turned in on Wednesday really bouncing and happy after a very good win but this just made life difficult for two or three days.
"We don't expect to see a repeat of it. The boys are intelligent enough to know that, if there is a repeat of this, we won't be so charitable."
Gatland has adopted a highly-disciplined approach since taking over the reins in November 2007 - one reflected in Wales' subsequent unbeaten record in the competition.
Following a high-level investigation - and an undoubted rebuke from the New Zealander - Henson and company offered a public apology.
Phillips added: "Even professionals have a blow-out, let's not get away from it, rugby players and football players.
"These boys are on a treadmill for 10 or 11 months of the year, every other week they are away from home travelling and there are a lot of demands on them.
"People need to have a blow-out occasionally but there is a time and a place for it. It has got to be controlled."
Phillips added that the players had also apologised to their colleagues during a team meeting.
He continued: "The boys were very forthcoming. They got up (in the meeting) and apologised - they were pretty frank.
"People have fronted up, they haven't run away or made excuses."