BATH and Wales back row forward Taulupe Faletau looks likely to miss at least the start of the 6 Nations Championship after the knee ligament injury he suffered in the European Rugby Champions Cup clash at Toulon on Saturday, it was revealed today.

Faletau sustained the injury during Bath's 24-20 defeat in the south of France, with his club revealing he was likely to be sidelined for 12-16 weeks.

A club statement said: "Bath Rugby can confirm that Taulupe Faletau suffered a grade three medial knee ligament injury against Toulon on Saturday, which is likely to see the back rower sidelined for between 12 to 16 weeks.''

Director of Rugby Todd Blackadder added: “We’re really disappointed for Taulupe – he’s been in great form this season, so it’s really unfortunate news.

"However, he’s in great hands with the medical team and we look forward to having him back on the pitch soon.

"These are opportunities where players can step up, and I've been thoroughly impressed by the way the likes of Paul Grant and Zach Mercer have performed over the last few weeks, and I'm sure they'll continue to do so."

The 6 Nations Championship gets under way on February 3, with Wales hosting Scotland on the opening weekend.