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Aviva Premiership
Diamond confirms Powell's rugby league switch
ESPN Staff
April 9, 2013
Sale's Andy Powell celebrates his side's victory over Gloucester, Gloucester v Sale Sharks, Aviva Premiership, Kingsholm, Gloucester, England, April 21, 2012
Andy Powell looks like he will be playing rugby league next season © Getty Images
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Players/Officials: Steve Diamond | Andy Powell
Tournaments/Tours: Aviva Premiership
Teams: Sale Sharks | Wales

Sale Sharks boss Steve Diamond has claimed that former Wales No.8 Andy Powell will swap codes at the end of the season and has signed for Wigan Warriors but the rugby league side are yet to confirm the move.

Powell, who toured with the British & Irish Lions in 2009, has 23 Wales caps to his name and has been a key figure in Sale's rise off the foot of the Aviva Premiership table. Rumours at the weekend suggested that Powell was close to agreeing a deal with Wigan, and Diamond has claimed that these are true.

Sale had hoped to keep Powell, with Diamond claiming in the aftermath of their Anglo-Welsh Cup final loss to Harlequins that they were in discussions with the back-row concerning a new deal, but he has opted to take up a contract with the rugby league giants, according to Diamond.

Diamond said to the BBC: "Andy won't be with us next year. He's signed for Wigan for three years, although I don't know the in-depth details of the contract.

"Andy's a good player and has been a good stalwart of Sale for the last couple of years. It was time for both parties to move away and, fortunately for Andy, he's got a contract now in rugby league that will see him through the remainder of his career."

Wigan are yet to confirm the move with their assistant coach Iestyn Harris saying on Sunday that he did not know anything about the switch. But he added that "it would be great for Wales but, as for him coming to Wigan, I don't know anything."

And their chairman Ian Lenagan has declined to comment on the speculation surrounding Powell saying: "Sale can talk about their players as much as they want but I am not going to comment on their comments."

If Powell does complete his switch to rugby league then he could feature for Wales in October's Rugby League World Cup.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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