Scarlets backs coach Stephen Jones will not be part of Wales’ summer tour coaching team due to the region’s advancement in the latter stages of the Guinness PRO12.
The West Wales region’s third-placed finish will see them take on Leinster in Dublin in the first of the Championship semi-finals on Friday 19th May, and Jones believes the workload will adversely affect his preparations for Wales’ forthcoming Two-test tour, and so has taken the decision not to be involved.
The Wales coaching team for the tour is led by head Coach Robin McBryde’s and includes Shaun Edwards, Cardiff Blues coach Matt Sherratt and Wales Sevens head coach Gareth Williams. If necessary, any new additions to the coaching set-up will be made in due course.
McBryde said: “I was looking forward to welcoming Stephen onto the summer tour, as were the rest of the management team, so I’m disappointed that we are missing out on the opportunity to work together. However, I have to respect his decision and wish him and the region the best of luck over the coming weeks.”
Former Wales fly-half Jones commented: “Firstly, I would like to thank Robin for his support and understanding on this matter. It was a huge honour to be named as part of Robin’s coaching set-up for the summer tour and I am grateful to Robin for giving me that opportunity.
“Having said that we are delighted, as a region, to be in a position to be playing for silverware and the Scarlets has to take precedence. Reaching the play-offs means an extended season and increased workload meaning that I can’t give my undivided attention to preparing for the tour.
“I wish the coaching group, and the players alike, the very best of luck in the two-Test tour, but am also looking forward to the next few weeks with the Scarlets as we push for a place in the final.”
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