WALES forward Ross Moriarty is back running and is on course to make his Dragons return during the Six Nations.

The back rower has been out of action since suffering an injury to his right ankle on international duty in October.

The 2017 Lions tourist initially hoped to feature in the Autumn Nations Cup and was close to a return against Ireland only to suffer another blow.

The 26-year-old was released back to the Dragons and after medical assessment had an operation at the end of November.

The region return to action in the Guinness PRO14 against Connacht in Newport a week on Friday and director of rugby Dean Ryan revealed that they are poised for a fitness boost, with Moriarty not far behind a returning contingent.

"We've got Sam Davies back, Greg Bateman should be in the mix, Rhodri Williams is back, Jordan Williams is back," said Ryan.

"Ross will be a bit longer but is running for us and it's great to see him back out there. He is not training yet and is on a little bit of a longer timeframe."

The Dragons have seven games left in the PRO14 before the Rainbow Cup featuring the South African quartet of the Stormers, Bulls, Sharks and Lions, although that tournament depends on coronavirus restrictions.

COMEBACK: Wales forward Ross Moriarty suffered an ankle injury in the autumn

COMEBACK: Wales forward Ross Moriarty suffered an ankle injury in the autumn

Ryan believes that Moriarty will return in club rugby before potentially earning a call-up for the Six Nations.

"I think that we will see Ross in both over the next period because he will definitely be back for us soon," said the director of rugby.

"Once he gets a couple of games, I am pretty sure he will be a stand-out and ready for if Wales need him."

Wales have selected six back rowers for the Six Nations with the Dragons' Aaron Wainwright joined by former Rodney Parade favourites Taulupe Faletau and Dan Lydiate, Josh Navidi, Justin Tipuric and the uncapped Josh Macleod.

Cardiff Blues duo James Botham and Shane Lewis-Hughes missed out despite impressing when given a first taste of Test rugby in the autumn.

Six Nations 'Super Saturday' is on March 20, the day before the Dragons finish their PRO14 campaign at home to Glasgow.