Rob Howley handed 18-month suspension over betting breaches

The Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) has handed former Wales Rugby assistant coach Rob Howley an 18-month ban after he was found to be in breach of World Rugby Anti-corruption and Betting Regulations – known as regulation 6.

After news of the betting breaches came to light, Howley was sent home from the Rugby World Cup six days before Wales’ opening pool win against Pool D opponents Georgia. He was subsequently replaced by Stephen Jones, while the WRU carried out its investigation.

The suspension is backdated to the time of his initial withdrawal from the World Cup on the 16th September 2019, meaning Howley would be free to return to the game on or after 16th June 2020.

In a statement, the WRU explained: “The decision, which has been published in full, comprehensively covers the charges and mitigating features considered by the panel.

“As such, no further comment will be made by the WRU or Rob Howley on this subject at this time and media are requested to please respect his privacy and that of his family with this in mind.”

The former Wales scrum-half has admitted to placing 363 bets with a variety of bookmakers involving more than 1,000 matches, which have included a number of matches involving the Welsh team.

Howley has also admitted to placing two bets on individual players on the Welsh side. One bet related to whether the named player would score a try at any point during a match and the other where the named player would score the opening try.

An independent panel, chaired by Sir Wyn Williams, found that the two players had no knowledge of the bets placed by Howley.

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