Warren Gatland recognised for services to rugby in Queen's Birthday Honours

Source: 1News

Chiefs coach Warren Gatland has been recognised in the delayed Queen’s Birthday Honours list this morning for his services to rugby from his time as a coach in Wales.

Chiefs head coach Warren Gatland. Crusaders vs. Chiefs Super Rugby Aotearoa. Orangetheory Stadium, Christchurch, New Zealand. Saturday 28 June 2020. © Copyright Image: Martin Hunter / www.photosport.nz

Gatland was awarded Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for services to rugby which includes coaching Wales for 12 years as well as two British and Irish Lions tours in 2013 and 2017.

During his time with Wales, Gatland led the side to four Six Nations titles, three Grand Slams, two World Cup semi-finals and a brief stint atop the world rankings.

The CBE follows the Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) Gatland received in 2014 for his services to rugby.

"I am incredibly honoured," says Gatland.

"This award is recognition of everyone involved in Welsh rugby and all that we achieved together during my time as head coach.

"Rugby is a huge part of my life and has given me so much joy as a player, a father to a rugby-playing son and also as a coach.

"It has also given me so many incredible friendships and experiences too. I feel very fortunate to be able to do something I love every day, and I would like to thank everyone who has supported me during my career."

Gatland has since returned to New Zealand to coach the Chiefs for the next few years, although his return was rocky with the Waikato franchise finishing last and winless in the Super Rugby Aotearoa.

Gatland will now take a break from coaching the Chiefs so he can lead the Lions for a third time during their tour of South Africa, although the series is in question due to the Covid-19 pandemic.