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Last Updated: Thursday, 16 February 2006, 15:29 GMT
Jenkins does not want Wales job
Gareth Jenkins is unhappy with the way the WRU is run
Gareth Jenkins is unhappy with the way the WRU is run
Gareth Jenkins has ruled himself out of the running to be the new Wales coach.

The Llanelli Scarlets director of rugby says he is not interested in applying unless changes are made to top personnel at the Welsh Rugby Union.

"I find it very difficult to work with the group of people that manage Welsh rugby at this time," Jenkins said.

"That probably makes me unavailable at the moment, but if circumstances change and new people were involved I would want to be considered in the future."

Jenkins was overlooked by the WRU when Mike Ruddock, who shocked Wales by stepping down on Tuesday, was appointed as national coach two years ago.

The Scarlets supremo appeared to be the front-runner and popular choice, before the WRU persuaded Ruddock to apply for the post in circumstances that still rankle with Jenkins.

Mike won a Six Nations Grand Slam for the first time in 27 years and that says it all
Gareth Jenkins

"I wouldn't want to work with people who I felt let me down particularly badly," Jenkins added.

"But I still feel as if I could coach Wales, I still feel as if I've got a real ambition of wanting to do that sometime in my career."

Jenkins admitted the announcement and timing of Ruddock's departure caught him by surprise, but praised his rival's time in charge of Wales.

"I was as flabbergasted and as shocked as everyone else in Wales I think," Jenkins said.

"The reaction has been 'what the heck has gone on?' - there's more coming out, more emerging all the time about the circumstances.

"All I can say is Mike has had an amazing, short international rugby career.

"He's won a Six Nations Grand Slam for the first time in 27 years and that says it all."

Should caretaker Wales coach Scott Johnson decide to return to his native Australia at the end of the Six Nations, the WRU will face a very short list of suitable candidates for the permanent post.

Many in Wales would not be surprised if Johnson somehow resolved his family problems and remained as Wales coach.

But the Sydney Morning Herald reported on Thursday that Australian Rugby Union officials believe Johnson will be a member of the new-look Wallabies management staff despite his Wales appointment.

Johnson, who was pursued by Queensland before recently agreeing to be one of new coach John Connolly's assistants, is understood to be close to finalising his contract negotiations with the ARU.

"I would love to stay in Wales if I could, but it is a family decision," Johnson has said.

"I can tell you categorically that the Welsh Rugby Union has done everything in its power to keep me and has been the fairest employer I have ever had.

"I know they would do anything for me to stay, but the reality is there are other things."

Interview: Llanelli Scarlets director of rugby Gareth Jenkins

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