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Andy Powell joins London Wasps from Cardiff Blues

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Andy Powell to push for Wales recall after Wasps move

Wales back-rower Andy Powell has joined Wasps on a one-year deal after being released by Cardiff Blues.

The 28-year-old will link up with Wales defence coach Shaun Edwards at Wasps.

"This is a pure rugby decision. After all the speculation about where I will be playing, all I want to do is get my head down and play," said Powell.

"I know Edwards from my time with Wales and I took little persuading, once I met with (Wasps director of rugby) Tony Hanks, about how serious this team is."

Blues coach Dai Young had earlier said that both parties felt it was in their best interests if they parted company.

Andy Powell poses in a Wasps short after completing his move
Wasps will be Powell's sixth club

"Last season has been a difficult one for Andy following the unwise incident with the golf buggy, he's lost his way somewhat," said Young.

Brecon-born Powell won the last of his 14 caps in Wales' remarkable Six Nations comeback win over Scotland in February.

The night after the game he was arrested for, and later admitted to, driving a golf buggy on the M4 motorway while drunk.

Powell was dropped from the Wales squad, but has always been a favourite with national coach Warren Gatland and was recalled for the June Tests.

Andy sees this next season as pivotal in his ambitions to represent his country and play in the World Cup

Powell's agent Emanuele Palladino

His hopes of an immediate return in the red of his country however were scuppered by a thigh injury.

Powell, who had a year left on his Blues contract, made his Wales debut against South Africa in 2008 after a nomadic career that had seen him play for Newport, Leicester, Beziers and the Scarlets before joining the Blues in 2005.

He made a huge impact in his first international season, winning a place on the 2009 British and Lions tour of South Africa.

But he has struggled for game time in his favoured number eight position, captain Ryan Jones wearing that jersey for Wales and former All Black Xavier Rush for Cardiff.

Rush signed a contract to move to Ulster next season, but has since reversed his decision and re-signed at the Blues.

In that time, Powell was linked with moves to Agen and to rugby league side Crusaders.

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WestHamWasps

"Everyone at the Blues would like to thank Andy for his services to the region over the past five years," said Young.

"When he is fully focused, Andy is one of the best back-row forwards in the country, as he showed when he was deservedly called up to represent his country and the British and Irish Lions during his time with the Blues."

A statement from Powell's agent Emanuele Palladino said: "Andy would like to thank Cardiff Blues for all of their support over the last five memorable years.

"His time at the club has been extremely enjoyable and positive, and has seen him enjoy a meteoric rise through the ranks to become a Welsh international and Lion.

"Andy, however, felt that he needed a new challenge and sees this next season as pivotal in his ambitions to represent his country and play in the World Cup next year."



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see also
Blues paired with Powell's Wasps
13 Jul 10 |  Rugby Union
Powell still Super League target
01 Jul 10 |  Welsh
Rugby league move likely - Powell
21 May 10 |  Welsh
Wales suffer Powell injury blow
03 Jun 10 |  Welsh
Powell 'deserves second chance'
17 May 10 |  Welsh
Powell back for Wales' June Tests
16 May 10 |  Welsh
Powell can fill Rush void - Young
21 Apr 10 |  Cardiff Blues
Powell admits 'golf buggy' charge
02 Mar 10 |  Wales
Powell regret over 'stupid prank'
24 Feb 10 |  Welsh
Powell removed from Wales squad
15 Feb 10 |  Welsh
Powell extends stay at the Blues
15 Jan 09 |  Cardiff Blues
Powell leaves Stradey for Blues
29 Jul 05 |  Welsh
Wales' rugby fixtures
26 Jun 07 |  Welsh
Wales rugby results archive
15 Oct 03 |  Welsh
BBC Sport Wales coverage
03 Oct 11 |  Wales


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