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He has no idea what my salary is in France - Edwards; SHAUN BLASTS INCOMING WALES COACH'S COMMENTS.


SHAUN EDWARDS has taken issue with incoming Wales coach Wayne Pivac's claim he is joining France after the World Cup for more money.

It is understood Edwards would have stayed with Wales had he been offered the full fouryear deal he wanted. But it has been claimed the Welsh Rugby Union didn't make the offer until after he had agreed to join the French revolution of federation president Bernard Laporte.

Pivac and assistant coaches Stephen Jones and Jonathan Humphreys have signed four-year deals with a two-year break clause should the WRU wish to get rid of them.

Edwards didn't want that type of contract, demanding a straight fouryear term if he was to carry on with Wales past the World Cup in Japan.

Pivac had addressed the subject of Edwards opting for France at a Scarlets' press conference ahead of Saturday's play-off against the Ospreys in Swansea for the final place in next season's European Champions Cup.

"We had some talks with Shaun and they were productive, but we did not quite get it over the line," Pivac said.

"It is an individual choice and probably a financial one."

But Edwards was unhappy with Pivac's assertion that money was the key issue, issuing a statement to the Daily Post's sister paper the Western Mail.

It said: "I am very disappointed with Wayne Pivac's comments - he has no idea what my salary is in France.

"The Wales team is on the greatest run in the history of Welsh rugby with 14 international victories in a row.

"We have recently won the Grand Slam and a fourth Six Nations title under our head coach Warren Gatland.

"I have been a part of them and have given Wales 12 years of loyal service, enjoying my time here immensely and having a great rapport with the Welsh public, who I love.

"There's a lot to be excited about with the World Cup around the corner. I suggest we just do our own jobs and concentrate on the upcoming World Cup."

Edwards last week accepted a four-and-ahalf-year contract with France to become inbound coach Fabien Galthie's key lieutenant following the World Cup.

It came after Gatland had told his defence coach he was sick of reading about the saga and demanded he sort out his future.

Edwards has been Gatland's right-hand man throughout heady times for Welsh rugby. He was set to share defensive duties with former Wales full-back Byron Hayward as part of Pivac's new-look Welsh coaching team.

But the wrangle with the WRU over the length of his contract enabled France to enter and win the race for his services.

Edwards will join exscrum-half general Galthie and another former France captain, Raphael Ibanez, who is expected to be appointed team manager, in the new management team being assembled by Laporte.

Ex-hooker Ibanez and Edwards worked closely together at Wasps when the English club was the dominant force in European rugby.

Pivac said he intends to address the final piece in his Wales coaching jigsaw next week.

Former Wales captains Jones and Humphreys will be his attack and forwards organisers.

Hayward will be a defence coach but it is unclear whether Edwards' decision to say 'oui' to France will result in Pivac's plan to appoint a second rearguard specialist still going ahead.

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Publication:Daily Post (Conwy, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUFR
Date:May 16, 2019
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