Prince William weighs in on Wales rugby sacking in rare personal message to new coach


Prince William has been the patron of the Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) since 2016.

He said: “Wishing Warren Gatland the very best of luck for the run into the 6 Nations and Rugby World Cup.”

To stress this tweet was coming from the heir to the throne, the message was signed off with his name’s initial, “W”.

This message was also translated into Welsh and issued in a separate tweet.

Prince William smiling

Prince William has been the patron of the Welsh Rugby Union since 2016 (Image: GETTY)

Wayne Pivac in a suit and red tie

Wayne Pivac is no longer Wales’ head coach (Image: GETTY)

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Mr Pivac had taken over Mr Gatland as Wales’s coach three years and one month ago and is now passing the baton back to him.

After his sacking had been announced, Mr Pivac said on Monday he was “sad to stand down” but conceded his team’s results had been “inconsistent”.

Since his arrival at the WRU, Mr Pivac’s Wales won 13 matches out of the 34 played.

Most recently, it lost against George and Australia in the autumn series.


Prince William kicking a rugby ball

Prince William became vice royal patron of the WRU in 2007 (Image: GETTY)

Prince William cheering for Wales while Prince Harry looks at him

Prince Harry used to be the patron of England rugby (Image: GETTY)

Mr Gatland signed a four-year deal with the WRU that will see him leading the team through the 2027 World Cup to be held in Australia.

Prince William has been associated with the WRU since 2007, when he became its vice royal patron.

Almost a decade later, his grandmother Queen Elizabeth II passed on to him the role of patron.

Prince William interacting with Prince George while Kate stands next to them

Prince William, Prince George and Kate watched an England v Wales match together in February (Image: GETTY)

Kate smiling in a England Rugby jersey while she holds a rugby ball

Kate became patron of England Rugby in February (Image: GETTY)

In February, one year after the Duke and Duchess of Sussex confirmed they would not return to the royal fold, these roles were passed on to Kate, Princess of Wales.

The Princess marked this new appointment by heading to Twickenham Stadium for a special training session with England players.

Kate and Prince William faced each other as supporters of the two different teams later that month, as they attended a Six Nations England v Wales game at Twickenham accompanied by their rugby-loving firstborn, Prince George.


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