Rugby

Wales World Cup Prep Thrown Into Disarray As Coach Howley Is Sent Home

Wales World Cup Prep Thrown Into Disarray As Coach Howley Is Sent Home

Rob Howley has been sent home from the Rugby World Cup in Japan.

The Wales attack coach is under investigation for breaching World Rugby regulations in relation to betting on rugby union.

Howley has already been replaced in the role by Stephen Jones who was due to take over from the 48-year-old after the tournament.

Howley has worked with Wales head coach Warren Gatland for the past 11 years and had been linked with the Italy head coaching job in recent weeks.

Wales are in Pool D of the World Cup along with Australia, Fiji, Georgia and Uruguay. Their opening game of the tournament is against Georgia on Monday.

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A statement from the WRU on the matter reads:

The WRU can confirm that Rob Howley has returned to Wales to assist with an investigation in relation to a potential breach of World Rugby regulation 6, specifically betting on rugby union.

The decision was taken to act immediately in light of recent information passed to the WRU.

No further details can be provided at this stage as this would prejudice the investigation. If required an independent panel will be appointed to hear the case.

Rob has co-operated fully with our initial discussions and we would ask that the media appreciate this is a difficult and personal matter for Rob and that his privacy is respected before an outcome is reached.

Warren Gatland has consulted with senior players and Stephen Jones will be arriving in Japan imminently to link up with the squad as attack coach.

Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

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