Dai Young set to renew Wasps contract
The WRU is set to lose the option of approaching Dai Young to become the next Wales head coach, with the former Lions prop close to agreeing to extend his contract at Wasps well past 2019.
With Warren Gatland having confirmed he will leave the post after the World Cup in Japan that year, Young has been mooted as a potential replacement given the staggering rebuilding job he has done at the English club.
Wasps currently sit top of the Aviva Premiership after almost going out of business due to financial difficulties just three years ago.
Young left Cardiff Blues – after guiding them to Anglo-Welsh and European Challenge Cup glory in 2009 and 2010 respectively – to take the helm at the now Coventry-based outfit in 2011.
He has won plaudits for helping keep the club afloat in the early part of his tenure and moulding them into a side that can now contend for the domestic title as well as the European Champions Cup. They face Leinster in the quarter-finals of this year’s competition in April.
But Young’s success has seen the Wasps board move to tie him down beyond his current contract which was due to expire in 2019. It’s understood they want him to sign up until 2023.
He has yet to put pen to paper as yet but Wasps see that as a formality, meaning Wales will have to look elsewhere for Gatland’s successor in two years time.
Present interim boss Rob Howley will now be viewed as the favourite and Friday night’s victory against Ireland will have strengthened his case even though Wales slipped up against England and Scotland beforehand and were largely dismal throughout the autumn series even though their November win return was three from four.
The WRU will also have the option of looking overseas and there are bound to be any number of potential candidates in the southern hemisphere.
It’s not known how keen they are to explore the idea of Young stepping up to the Test scene, though union chief executive Martyn Phillips has said that the new man would ideally be someone who has won things at club level.
Young has done that with the Blues and will be fancied to do so again with a Wasps team that is buoyant at the moment.
He may yet take charge of Wales in the future, but the prospect of him succeeding Gatland is now all but dead in the water.http://www.walesonline.co.uk/sport/rugb ... i-12731014