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Last Updated: Saturday, 10 November 2007, 16:20 GMT
Edwards would consider Wales role
Shaun Edwards is currently head coach with London Wasps
Shaun Edwards is currently head coach with London Wasps
Wasps head coach Shaun Edwards says he is open to the possibility of joining the Wales coaching set-up.

His ex-boss at the Londoners, Warren Gatland, was announced as the new Wales coach on Friday and Edwards admits it is tempting to work together again.

"We had a marvellous relationship at Wasps, obviously on the field with the success we had," he told the Back Page.

"But he wasn't just a work colleague, he's a friend and I would listen to any offers that were sent my way."

Edwards and Gatland's time together at Wasps produced one Heineken Cup and three English league titles.

Gatland, 44, who has also coached Ireland, will start his new role in December, having been prised from a job with Waikato and the Chiefs in his native New Zealand on a four-year deal.

The Kiwi's first game in charge of Wales will be their Six Nations opener against England at Twickenham on 2 February.

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"Warren did tell me he wants to speak to me and he doesn't have a great deal of time to get his backroom staff together before the Six Nations," added Edwards.

"It's something I'd listen to with an open mind, but obviously they've got to approach me first and at the moment I'm just concentrating on the Heineken Cup with Wasps."

Wasps director of rugby Ian McGeechan would not want to lose someone of the calibre of Edwards, who made his name as a player in rugby league with Wigan and Great Britain.

But there is the possibility that Edwards could combine roles at both club and Test level.

Whatever his future, Edwards says the return of Gatland as an international coach is good news for Wales and the game in general.

"It's exciting for world rugby, there's no doubt that Warren is one of the best coaches in the world," Edwards said.

"To get him coaching one of the Six Nations teams is fantastic.

"He's an honest coach, he will work the players very, very hard but he's the type of coach who will give a little bit as well.

"He doesn't believe in having very long training sessions, but there'll be a lot of tackling drills as he's a big believer that defence should be used as an attacking weapon.

"He'll make sure he gets the best support staff under him - the best fitness trainers, the best masseurs - so the players will feel that they're really being looked after."

There have been rumours of 'player power' in Welsh rugby being a contributory factor in the departure of Gareth Jenkins and his predecessor Mike Ruddock from the Wales job.

But Edwards says that Gatland will ensure the whole squad is singing from the same hymn-sheet.

"Warren will involve the senior players to a certain degree, but it will only be to a certain degree," Edwards said.

"When you get a superstar like Warren Gatland you do tend to give them more time, because he's one of the very few people who's got a proven track record in both the southern and northern hemispheres.

"Whoever he's working for he gives his heart and soul to that country or that club and you can guarantee that when he leaves, it'll be in a better state of health."



SEE ALSO
The tests facing Gatland
09 Nov 07 |  Welsh
Corny Captions - Gatland arrives
09 Nov 07 |  Scrum V Extras
White not ruling out Wales role
04 Nov 07 |  Rugby Union
Wales' rugby coaches
29 Mar 06 |  Welsh


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