Warren Gatland will be unhappy with the decision…
England head coach Stuart Lancaster has won the battle of wills over the closing of the roof at the Millenium stadium in the first match of the Six Nations against Wales, reports the Daily Telegraph.
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Wales boss Warren Gatland had wanted the roof to be closed at their home stadium in order to create a better atmosphere and protect supporters from the rain. However, following a dry forecast the Rugby Football Union informed its Welsh counterpart that it was their preference that the roof stay open. As both teams have to agree for it to be closed under World Rugby regulations, this was effectively a veto.
The England team admitted to struggling to deal with the atmosphere during their 30-3 loss under the roof two years ago. That defeat lost them the last Six Nations, but Lancaster claimed that it had nothing to do with the decision.
The 45-year-old explained, “It’s forecast to be dry and part of the reason you’d have a roof is to keep the conditions dry. If it’s going to be dry, why do you need a roof?”
“Both teams would prefer to play in decent conditions. Wales are a very strong attacking team and so it will play to their strengths as well as ours. It’s going to be pretty noisy anyway. It’s at night so it will still be dark overhead,” he concluded.
The two teams play each other on Friday evening, in the opening match of this year’s competition.