Warren Gatland has extended his contract as director of rugby with the Zurich Premiership club London Wasps until 2006.
Warren Gatland has extended his contract as director of rugby with the Zurich Premiership club London Wasps until 2006. The New Zealander, who took over from Nigel Melville in November 2001, has signed a new three-year deal after landing the Zurich Premiership and Parker Pen Challenge Cup double last season. "I'm really happy that Wasps have extended my contract and I would like to thank the club and players for having faith in me," said Gatland. "We are a small, family-orientated club and being a family man, this fits into my life perfectly." "When discussions initially took place about the extension on my current contract, I spoke to my wife and two kids and it was a family decision that made me agree to stay on for a further three years." Gatland believes that last season's double has set the club up for a concerted challenge for the Heineken Cup. "We've won the English title and a European competition and so the next goal is the Heineken Cup," said Gatland. "I'm also looking forward to this season, as it will provide the club and myself with new challenges, especially if we lose key players to the World Cup." "All I can say is London Wasps are certainly a club and team to be proud of." Wasps chairman Chris Wright said:"Warren has had a tremendous impact on London Wasps since he took over as director of rugby." "The team's record since then speaks for itself. Warren is clearly in the top echelons of rugby coaches throughout the world and is clearly much sought after. " "I am delighted that we have been able to come to an agreement for Warren to continue with Wasps for a further three years." "If we have players away for the World Cup during the first half of the season, 2003/4 will present a tremendous challenge, but we are setting our targets high and will be focusing on making steady progress, not just in retaining our championship title, but also in the Heineken Cup."