Warren Gatland offers resignation after Wales hit ‘rock bottom’ at Six Nations | Rugby | Sport

Warren Gatland has revealed that he offered to resign as Wales head coach after Saturday’s gutting defeat to Italy at the Principality Stadium. Gatland has endured a torrid time since returning for a second spell in charge of Wales, who suffered a 21-year low on the final day of the Six Nations.

Wales were beaten by Italy in front of their own fans despite mounting a late surge, with the visitors hanging on to claim a 24-21 victory. The result condemned Wales to their first Six Nations wooden spoon in 21 years, having lost all five of their matches in this year’s edition of the tournament.

Speaking in his post-match press conference, Gatland revealed that he offered his resignation to WRU chief executive Abi Tierney after the final whistle but was told that he should stay on to oversee Wales’ rebuilding process.

“I said if you want me to resign, I am happy to do that,” said Gatland. “She replied: ‘Like hell, that’s the last thing we want you to do, that’s what I’m really afraid of’.”

Gatland has won just one of his 10 matches in the Six Nations since replacing Wayne Pivac, who was dismissed for similar defeats to Italy and Georgia in 2022. However, the former went on to insist that he still believes he is the right man to lead Wales into the next World Cup cycle despite their current situation.

“Yes, absolutely, I’ve made that commitment,” he added. “I can promise you we’ll go away and review this really carefully. We’ve already done some review stuff and [we will] work on areas that need to improve.”

Expanding on the sorry state of Welsh rugby, Gatland admitted that his side were at ‘rock bottom’ but vowed to keep working with his young squad in a bid to make improvements. He also revealed that he would be more involved with the regions going forward with the aim of improving the player pathway to the national team.

“We’re probably at rock bottom but I see some light at the end of the tunnel,” said Gatland. “I see some talent who will be excellent internationals, like Mackenzie Martin. I thought Evan Lloyd threw well, he just needs to play regional rugby. The two 10s have developed. Mason Grady came on and had an impact.

“There are small things we’ve got to work on with these players. There’s planning to be done over the next few weeks, making sure as a coaching group we’re visible in the regions. How the academy is set up and run becomes important for us. It’s tough because we haven’t had a lot of success at [under] 20s level over the year.”

Source link

Leave a Reply

Back To Top