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Delve is your man, says Mac.

WARREN Gatland has been told to consider Gareth Delve for Wales' World Cup squad.

Rod Macqueen, the coach of Super 15 side Melbourne Rebels, has backed the Welshman to make Gatland's squad in New Zealand in September.

The 28-year-old Delve, a vice-captain at the Rebels, put his Test career on hold when he signed for the new Aussie Super Rugby franchise last year.

But Macqueen, who coached Australia to World Cup success in 1999 and is widely regarded as the best coach in the professional era, has tipped Delve for a World Cup place.

"The fact he's playing in a southern hemisphere competition and understands a lot more about southern hemisphere games is an advantage," said Macqueen.

Macqueen coached the Wallabies to a 2-1 series victory over the Lions in 2001.

"With the World Cup down here in New Zealand and playing against all those New Zealand and South African players, you get to know their play a lot better."

Delve is the first Welshman to play in the Super Rugby competition and has proved to be one of the Rebels' best signings.

He has delivered consistently good performances during Melbourne's erratic start to their inaugural season.

Macqueen said he had not heard from anyone in the Wales set-up but would be disappointed if they were not keeping a close eye on the Cardiff-born No.8. The 11-times capped Delve decided to try his luck Down Under after leaving Gloucester.

He also rejected a move to his home region, the Blues, to join England internationals Danny Cipriani and Martin Lipman in Melbourne.
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Wales On Sunday (Cardiff, Wales)
Geographic Code:8NEWZ
Date:Apr 3, 2011
Words:262
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