Rugby Union

Wales set to continue contract talks with Gatland

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Gatland to sit down with the WRU. (©GettyImages)
Gatland to sit down with the WRU. (©GettyImages).

Warren Gatland is set to begin talks over a new deal with the the Welsh Rugby Union as the 2013 Six Nations champions consider extending the New Zealander's current contract which is due to expire after the 2015 World Cup.

Gatland, who this summer led the British and Irish Lions to their first series win since 1997, was appointed as Wales coach in 2007 after the Red Dragons' disappointing performance at the World Cup under Gareth Jenkins.

The New Zealander has since led Wales to three Six Nations titles and two Grand Slams and Welsh Rugby Union chief Roger Lewis confirmed he's due to meet Gatland next week to discuss his future.

Speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live, Lewis said: "We've started talking. We have to start that planning for the national team now.

"We had a great night on the Sunday after that third Lions Test in Sydney… we're going away [this week] just the two of us, take some time off-site, and then we'll have a better idea of what's happening post-2015."

Following this summer's success in Australia, Gatland has been tipped to be coaching the British and Irish Lions when they tour New Zealand in four years time.

The Wales coach has also been linked with a return to his homeland to take charge of the All Blacks, but Lewis has stressed the WRU's desire to retain Gatland's services as Wales begin to plan the future of what is still a very young side.

"At this level of the game, it's not one year, two years or three years [of planning]," explained Lewis.

"We run a five-year cycle and that's the attitude we've brought into the game here in Wales, and that's the conversation we'll have.

"It's got to be what's right for Warren and his life, and his family. The other bits, in terms of the career, slot in," continued the WRU chief.

"[The meeting with Gatland] will be over a beer. I'll ask him, 'How do you feel? What do you think about the future?' And that will take as long as it takes."

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Topics:
Wales Rugby
British & Irish Lions
Rugby Union
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