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Last Updated: Saturday, 29 September 2007, 18:44 GMT 19:44 UK
Phil Bennett on Wales
Former Wales captain Phil Bennett
By Phil Bennett
Former Wales captain

I've just witnessed one of the greatest games I've ever seen in rugby union football, a classic, and yet I'm shaking in disbelief and am totally devastated because Wales are on their way home.

Wales coach Gareth Jenkins
Bennett feels the time is up for Jenkins as Wales coach
Gareth Jenkins is a proud man and I don't think he'll walk away from the job, but the press are going to be scathing.

I think he should resign because the media will destroy him in the next week or two.

That will get to the players, and the team need to build up their confidence after this result.

Gareth is a huge man, I played with him for eight seasons and he never took a step backwards on the field and he won't take a step backwards off the field.

Whether he'll have the backing of the Welsh Rugby Union I don't know; but for his own sake, his family's sake and for Welsh rugby's sake, it's time for Gareth to go.

He could ride the storm and he could carry on until his contract ends after next season's Six Nations, but I am just wondering does he really want it?

I'm sure Gareth will be emotionally drained after this experience and he should sit down over the next few days to consider his future

People are already asking if he's got the right back-up team. The criticism will now become very personal and that will affect his family life.

He's always said coaching Wales was the greatest job in the world, but is it worth it when your family are brought into it?

What worries me now is that the WRU might throw in one of the coaches from the Welsh regions. I don't think any of those four are ready for it.

I certainly don't want to see someone coming in from New Zealand and spending two or three years here on 400,000 a year.

We're in a bit of a mess in Wales at the moment. Welsh rugby is at a crossroads and I'm looking for leadership now.

Some of those people on the WRU board - Roger Lewis, David Pickering, Gerald Davies - have got to come up with answers in the next few days to reassure the nation.

I'm sure Gareth will be emotionally drained after this experience and he should sit down over the next few days to consider his future.

606: DEBATE
Some of the Welsh papers had described Fiji as some sort of pub team before the match, claiming they only had four players playing for good sides.

So the writing was on the wall before this game, and I dread to think what the papers will print on Sunday and Monday.

I don't know whether Gareth or the WRU can withstand that kind of criticism, but let's hope it's done with dignity one way or another.

*Phil Bennett was talking to BBC Radio Wales

SEE ALSO
BBC Sport Wales coverage
07 Aug 07 |  Wales
Wales' rugby coaches
29 Mar 06 |  Welsh
Wales 34-38 Fiji
29 Sep 07 |  Welsh
Wales v Fiji as it happened
29 Sep 07 |  Rugby Union
Rugby World Cup 2007 fixtures
16 Aug 07 |  Rugby Union
Fire and flair: Fijian rugby
29 Sep 06 |  Rugby Union
Wales v Fiji: Full record
29 Sep 06 |  Rugby Union
Fiji rugby songs
29 Sep 06 |  Rugby Union
The 1964 Fijians
24 Sep 07 |  Welsh


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