Tuesday 21 January 2020

Powell dropped by Wales

Andy Powell
Andy Powell

Wales have dropped Andy Powell from their 35-man RBS 6 Nations squad with immediate effect.

Powell is due to appear in court next month charged with drink-driving after he was arrested with a golf buggy at a motorway services.

Back-row forward Powell, 28, was arrested early on Sunday, hours after his team beat Scotland 31-24 at the Millennium Stadium.

Wales decided that Powell should be suspended from the squad for "behaviour contrary to the squad's code of conduct".

He was detained with another 28-year-old man at the service station near junction 33 of the M4 motorway, close to the spa hotel in the Vale of Glamorgan where his team were staying.

South Wales Police said Powell was charged with "driving a mechanically propelled vehicle whilst unfit through drink". The second man was released without charge.

Alan Phillips, Wales' team manager, said: "We take matters of player conduct extremely seriously and have been happy with the professionalism and discipline of this squad in general terms.

"Andy knows he has misbehaved and is apologetic, but he also knows that he must take responsibility for his own actions and accept the repercussions. This kind of behaviour cannot be tolerated in a professional, elite sporting environment and we have acted quickly and incisively in order to leave no ambiguity over the dim view we take of this situation.

"The player has made his private apologies to the Welsh management team as well as apologising in a public statement and we have also asked him to apologise to the Vale Resort Hotel, before asking him to leave the squad. We will now leave the South Wales Police service to conclude the matter and we will be making no further public statements at this time."

Wales have declined to call up a replacement for Powell, who has won 14 caps for his country and toured with the British Lions squad to South Africa. He is due to appear at Cardiff Magistrates' Court on March 2.

PA Media

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