Wales had a stellar Six Nations campaign. Their heroic efforts against Ireland clinched them the Grand Slam, which even made Warren Gatland smile. Since lifting the trophy, Wales have risen to second in the rankings and are looking solid for the Webb Ellis Cup. Every Welsh international must be elated to be playing in Wales right now but could money persuade them to leave?
‘Wales players have considered moves away’
Recently BBC Sport published an article on Wales players thinking about leaving the goldfish-bowl for money. In particular, Gareth Anscombe has been very vocal about the need for Welsh players to not be ‘let down’ by the Welsh Rugby Union. This statement comes after some players have been feeling under appreciated after an impressive Six Nations.
Anscombe was the second highest points scorer of the Six Nations and was a vital part of the team. Wales should do everything they can to keep him at Cardiff Blues because it will only enhance the region and the national team further. Additionally, Blues have signed Josh Adams and Hallam Amos. The combination of the three Welsh stars would only enhance their individual playing ability.
Instead there has been no news on Anscombe and his National Dual Contract, which runs out at the end of the season. If Wales do offer Anscombe a new contract (which they probably will), he should definitely be paid more than his previous dual contract.
Why? Not only to reward him for his loyalty but to keep him from being pinched by clubs abroad. With Harlequins and Bath supposedly interested, Wales need to offer a lucrative contract in order to compete with the two English Premiership clubs. Sadly if he moves he would breach the Wales 60 cap policy. Anscombe has only played 27 times for Wales, so would no longer be able to play for Wales if he moved abroad.
Should Welsh fans be worried?
To keep it short, they should not be worried. Wales have attracted the likes of Josh Adams to Wales. Adams has been a solid performer in the Gallagher Premiership for a few seasons now, he would have definitely been offered a contract to stay in England. If they can attract Adams to the Welsh regions, they can surely keep Anscombe at Cardiff Blues. Therefore, the combination of a lucrative contract and Wales recent success, should keep Anscombe and other Welsh internationals playing for the regions.
Written by Sam Powell