DRAGONS have pledged to rally around Cory Hill to help the Wales lock come to terms with his World Cup anguish.

The 27-year-old is heading home from Japan without featuring after failing to recover from a stress fracture of his leg with Ospreys forward Bradley Davies taking his place.

Wales head coach Warren Gatland had deemed that selecting Hill was "worth the risk" despite him not having played since scoring the crucial try in the Six Nations win against England in February.

The Dragons skipper was given the target of Sunday's key Pool D clash with Australia but missed his deadline and was withdrawn from the squad.

Hill is currently in Tokyo with his Test teammates but will soon return to his region.

A timeframe has not been given for his return to action and whether he will be in the mix for Guinness PRO14 rugby before the end of the World Cup.

South Wales Argus:

"We are just disappointed for him, we wished Cory all the best going over there as we did with all the boys," said forwards coach Ceri Jones.

"I am sure he will be deeply disappointed so it's a matter of getting him back over here, getting him back with us and rehabbing him as best we can along with the Welsh Rugby Union.

"They are a really tight group of boys, they look after each other and spent an awful lot of time with each other, not only here at Ystrad Mynach.

"They spend time in each other's company and I am sure Cory will want to get back with his mates."

Hill has become a key figure in Gatland's side since winning his first cap against Australia in the autumn of 2016.

The lock has won 24 caps and grown as a leader to the extent that he co-captained Wales on the tour to face South Africa and Argentina last summer.

Hill scored the key try against the English in the third part of the Grand Slam in Cardiff but was injured while powering over the line after getting his left ankle stuck between Billy Vunipola and Harry Williams.

South Wales Argus:

"He is a massively important part of that Wales squad, otherwise they wouldn't have taken him, and that shows how far he has come," said Jones.

While the Dragons prepare to help Hill with his disappointment, Wales pick up the pieces of their gamble.

His fellow lock Adam Beard, meanwhile, only arrived in Japan three days ago after having his appendix removed.

Skipper Alun Wyn Jones and Jake Ball are set to continue as Wales' second-row partnership against Australia, with flanker Aaron Shingler providing lock cover on the bench.

"It is unfortunate for Cory. He's such a wonderful person. It's just unfortunate," said attack coach Stephen Jones.

"Bradley is a great man with vast experience and two World Cups behind him, so he brings that experience into the squad."