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Last Updated: Friday, 5 October 2007, 06:44 GMT 07:44 UK
Lewis explains Jenkins' sacking
Roger Lewis
Roger Lewis said Gareth Jenkins was not the right man to take Wales forward
WRU chief executive Roger Lewis said Gareth Jenkins was sacked because he was not the right man to take Wales forward.

Speaking to BBC Radio Wales Scrum V show, Lewis also ruled out Jenkins' coaching staff as possible successors and said money was not an issue.

"We need someone who is going to take us forward over the next four or five years," he said.

Asked if Jenkins could have done that, he replied: "Obviously not."

A worldwide search to replace Jenkins began after his dismissal on Sunday following the World Cup exit at the hands of Fiji.

So far South African Nick Mallet is out of the running after taking on the challenge with Italy, while ex-Australia coach Eddie Jones - now part of the South Africa set-up - and former Wales coach Mike Ruddock are not thought to be interested.

Gareth was given everything that he asked for, nothing was withheld

WRU chief executive Roger Lewis

The other likely overseas names to be considered include Robbie Deans, the Crusaders coach, and the former Ireland and Wasps boss Warren Gatland.

But Lewis said the Union has the money to bring in a top coach after reporting pre-tax profits of 1m.

"We are a Union that has a very strong financial base and we can fight and punch with the best," he added.

Asked why Jenkins didn't get the time he wanted to develop the side, Lewis said: "It became clearer and clearer this year that what is required is a fundamental change within the elite game in Wales.

"I've always said Gareth was between a rock and a hard place to say after 16 months, judge him on the World Cup.

"That's what Gareth committed to, he did it his way. He was given everything that he asked for. Nothing was withheld.

"That means we have to ask ourselves some tough questions because quite simply, losing to Fiji is unacceptable.

"We had a very, very disappointing Six Nations, we know that. But we felt we had to stick with that team and let them develop, but it didn't happen."


He added: "You need strong foundations, you need things to build on and that's what we need to do now.

"We are going through the process of change.

"We have given out a clear unambiguous signal that we need to change and we need to look at all the structures that surround the elite game.

"We are totally focussed on the future and that means making sure that you look at everything that is required around a winning Wales.

"We've got one shot at this."

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