Powell close to new Wasps deal
April 13, 2011
Andy Powell is set to re-sign with Wasps © Getty Images
Wasps No.8 Andy Powell expects to sign a new two-year contract with the Aviva Premiership club in the near future, having downplayed a row over the release of Welsh players based in England prior to the Rugby World Cup.
The 29-year-old, whose contract expires this summer, expressed his desire to sign an extension earlier this year, but his delay in signing has come amid a row between Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) and Premier Rugby.
The governing body of the 12 Premiership clubs will not release players for international duty before August 4 - the latest date possible and just days before Wales' warm-up game against England.
Powell, who is determined to play in his first World Cup, insists Wasps want him to play a full role in Wales' summer preparations for the tournament in September.
"Hopefully we will sort it all out this week and put pen to paper," he said. "It's just a case of sorting a few little things and then it will all be done. It will be a two-year deal.
"The situation with Wales is not the issue, which is good for both parties. Wasps want me to go to the World Cup, so there is absolutely no issue there."
While the World Cup remains a massive draw for the Welsh international, who joined Wasps on a one-year deal last summer from Cardiff Blues, his mind is focused on reviving his club's fortunes after a disappointing season took another dip with their Amlin Challenge Cup exit to Harlequins last Friday.
Wasps, who currently lie eighth in the table, are out of contention for a Premiership play-off spot but Powell has not given up hope of qualifying for the Heineken Cup next season, should Northampton win the competition this year and Wasps scrape a seventh-place finish.
"If I am selected [for Wales] it would be great but for me now it's about Wasps getting three wins trying to get a bit of pride back in the shirt," he said. "It's mostly to do with injuries but that's when the best of you needs to come out.
"It's tough because some of the boys are leaving and they are probably thinking that the season is over but the boys coming back really need to try to focus and get three wins from the next three games, if we are to push for a place in Europe next season."
London Wasps RFC is one of a series of Aviva Premiership Rugby clubs working with Gatorade to encourage players of all levels to stay ahead of the game and improve their performance. ESPNscrum were put through their paces with a series of rugby coaching drills and offered hydration and sweat testing by a Gatorade Sports Science Institute scientist to highlight the effects of intensive training on the body. Gatorade is the official hydration partner of the Aviva Premiership.
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