Jamie Roberts’ perfect response to Warren Gatland’s Wales return
Warren Gatland was confirmed as Wales’ new head coach today in what Welsh fans hope will be one of the greatest fairytales rugby has ever seen.
The ex Wales boss left his role after the 2019 World Cup after twelve years at the helm, but a rocky three years under Wayne Pivac has seen him reunited.
Having won four Six Nations titles during his tenure, including three Grand Slams, the dream for all Wales fans is that he can recapture some of that magic and turn things around with the World Cup less than a year away.
Though this return his being celebrated, one of Gatland’s stalwarts Jamie Roberts made a joke, asking: “Thought everyone hated Warrenball?”
Gatland was often criticised during his time with Wales for his fairly basic style of play, with Roberts being at the heart of his ‘Warrenball’ tactic. Pivac was supposed to be the answer to that, bringing a new style of attacking rugby to Wales. That did not go down so well though, and Roberts has pointed out that ‘Warrenball’ looks far more appealing again to Wales fans.
Thought everyone hated Warrenball? 😂
— Jamie Roberts (@Jamiehuwroberts) December 5, 2022
“I’m very much looking forward to returning to coach Wales,” Gatland said after being appointed.
“This is an opportunity to achieve something with a talented group of players in a country so passionate about rugby. A country which made my family and I so welcome, when we first arrived fifteen years ago, and all the time we were there.
“There is little time for sentiment, professional sport is all about preparation, values and results. There will be new challenges as there always is with a change in head coach, but for me the environment, the players and their families will always come first.
“We must prepare to the best of our ability in the time available. We will value and respect each other, we will work hard and, if we get this right together, performances and results will follow.”
Wayne Pivac said: “I am obviously extremely sad to stand down from the role.
“It was a speedy review process post-Autumn Nations Series as time is of the essence with the Six Nations fast approaching. Unfortunately, the results or performances this year were not all as we hoped.
“We have played some really good rugby at times, but needed to do that more consistently. However, I know that there is a strong foundation for the squad to progress to great things in the future.
“I would like to thank the players, coaches, management and the WRU for their commitment, support and hard work in my time as head coach and to all the people in Wales for making me feel at home here over the past eight years.”