Wales’ Grand-Slam winning defence coach Shaun Edwards has today revealed he will leave Welsh Rugby at the end of this year after the Rugby World Cup.
Edwards has been Warren Gatland’s key lieutenant since joining the Kiwi in Wales in 2008.
The duo have masterminded Wales’ incredible haul of three Grand Slams and four Guinness Six Nations – including most recently during the 2019 Championship when they achieved their third clean sweep.
But with Gatland moving on at the end of this year and Wayne Pivac taking over at the helm, Edwards has opted for pastures new as well.
“After more than ten years with Wales this has been an incredibly difficult decision to reach but I won’t be renewing my contract,” he said.
“I would like to thank Warren and the WRU for the opportunity I have had working with the national team.
Wales defence coach Shaun Edwards will leave Welsh Rugby later this year, after the conclusion of the 2019 Rugby World Cup.
— Welsh Rugby Union 🏉 (@WelshRugbyUnion) May 2, 2019
“We have won four Guinness Six Nations titles during my time with Wales, but I sincerely hope and believe that the best days are yet to come and I am fully focused on seeing what we can achieve in Japan.”
Outgoing Wales head coach Gatland – who this week unveiled his World Cup training squad for the summer – paid tribute to his right-hand man.
“Shaun has been an important part of the Wales set up over the past 11 years for what has been a hugely rewarding time for Welsh rugby,” he said.
“It is pleasing that we can draw a line under the speculation regarding Shaun’s future with this announcement and we can look forward to preparing the squad for the RWC and the tournament itself in Japan later this year.”
Incoming Wales head coach Wayne Pivac added:
“Shaun has a great history with Wales and has been part of a coaching team that has been very successful.
🏴 Here is Wales’ 42-man training squad for the 2019 @rugbyworldcup, which includes two uncapped players in prop Rhys Carre and wing Owen Lane 🔴 Mae’r pâr o Gaerdydd wedi cynrychioli @cardiff_blues, Cymru D20 a D18 gyda’i gilydd. #HWFN pic.twitter.com/Om9fUxVAPP
— Welsh Rugby Union 🏉 (@WelshRugbyUnion) April 30, 2019
“When Shaun’s availability post RWC recently became apparent we worked with him to offer him a new contract which he was happy with and for him to be part of the new look coaching team going forward.
“Shaun has decided not to take that contract, which we must respect and we wish Shaun the very best in what lies ahead for him post Wales.”