Tom Shanklin's worst fears have been realised with the star Cardiff Blues centre ruled out of the British and Irish Lions tour of South Africa with a shoulder injury sustained in the Magners League clash against Newport Gwent Dragons.
Shanklin faces up to 16 weeks on the sidelines after a MRI scan confirmed he requires reconstructive surgery on the joint of his right shoulder.
Blues chief executive Robert Norster said: "I'm sure I can speak on behalf our the entire Blues family, indeed the entirety of Wales when I offer our sympathies to Tom following his devastating shoulder injury suffered last night that will prevent him travelling with the Lions to South Africa this summer.
"Tom and all our other Lions heading south have given their very best for the Blues and their country this year and such injuries hardly seem fitting or fair.
"Suffice to say Tom picked up the injury whilst giving his all for our team and we are all feeling for him at this difficult time of disappointment and frustration."
Nearly 40 players were involved in the first Wales Under 18 training session of the season. WRU National Performance Manager Gethin Watts is excited at the potential shown by the group and expects the Regional Under 18 Championship to hone their skills even further.