Gareth Bale is in ‘good shape’ as he prepares to earn his 100th cap for Wales in this weekend’s crucial World Cup qualifiers.

The Real Madrid forward, and Wales’ all-time leading goalscorer, has not played since September 8 when making his 99th appearance in a goalless Cardiff draw with Estonia.

Bale tore his hamstring a few days after that qualifier, but he has reported for international duty ahead of closing World Cup qualifiers against Belarus and Belgium and trained with the Wales squad on Tuesday.

The two fixtures are crucial for Wales’ hopes of reaching the World Cup for the first time since 1958.

What do Wales need from their World Cup qualifiers?

A second placed finish in their group would likely see Cymru drawn at home in the playoff semi final against one of the three worst second placed finishers or three teams who will qualify via the Nations League.

South Wales Argus: Wales players during a training session at The Vale Resort. Credit: PAWales players during a training session at The Vale Resort. Credit: PA

However, if Wales were to be pipped to second by the Czech Republic, Rob Page’s men would be one of those away teams, travelling to one of the six best second place teams in the one-legged semi-final.

In order to secure that second place, its likely Wales will need to pick up four points from their two home games against Belarus and Belgium.

Bale set to feature for Wales

Their hopes of doing that have received a huge boost, with talisman Bale looking set to feature.

“He’s looking very well,” goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey said. “He’s in good shape, he’s smiling and laughing – and when you get Gaz like that he’s fantastic to be around.”

Real boss Carlo Ancelotti had hoped to include Bale against Rayo Vallecano on Saturday, but the 32-year-old Wales captain was not considered fit enough to make the matchday squad.

But Hennessey believes that will not stop Bale from becoming only the second Welshman, after Chris Gunter, to reach the 100-cap landmark against Belarus in Cardiff this weekend.

Hennessey said: “He looks after himself very well. He’s always in the gym doing stuff and keeping up on his fitness.

“He’s very particular what he eats. He looks after his body and is in good shape.

“What he can do on a football field is absolutely amazing. Everyone knows his talent but he’s a special guy and a special person. He’s down to earth and fame will never change him.

“He’s a fantastic leader, a leader we’ve enjoyed, and who can hopefully keep leading us.

“People don’t see that side of him, when he’s in the dressing room. He’s vocal, he has got a fantastic football brain and he’s played at the highest level.”

How to watch Wales’ World Cup qualifiers

Both games will be shown live on Sky Sports and S4C.

South Wales Argus: Wales' Aaron Ramsey during a training session at The Vale Resort. Credit: PAWales' Aaron Ramsey during a training session at The Vale Resort. Credit: PA

Wales take on Belarus in the easier of their two games at 7.45pm on Saturday.

They will hope to claim all three points from that encounter and set up a huge clash with Belgium on Tuesday.

That will also be a 7.45pm kick off.