Gatland: Stadium roof call should be ours
March 15, 2012
Wales' Millennium Stadium has a retractable roof © Getty Images
Wales coach Warren Gatland believes that the home side should decide whether the the Millennium Stadium roof is closed on match days.
Currently, both participating teams must agree for the roof to be closed. If they cannot agree, it stays open.
Wales host France on Saturday with a coveted Six Nations Grand Slam on the line and the visitors are keen for the roof to be open, with rain forecast in Cardiff.
"It's okay if it is a nice day, isn't?" Gatland said. "I think it is something that maybe as a Welsh Union we need to make some sort of representation to the IRB (International Rugby Board).
"If it is our stadium and we've got the ability to open and close the roof, then maybe we should be the team that decides it.
"I would hate to think that on Saturday, if it is pouring down with rain and we've got the chance to close the roof [that we don't]. Potentially, it makes a game less open or less attractive because the rain may affect it.
"We all have a responsibility not just to broadcasters, but to the public and the game as a whole to make it as attractive as possible. If that means closing the roof because it is wet, then I think we should be able to do that."
Wales have scored nine tries in this season's tournament - all by their backs - and there is no doubt a firm playing surface would suit their style of play as they target a second title and Grand Slam of Gatland's four-year reign.
"At the moment the rules are the rules and both teams have to agree," Gatland added. "If one team decides they want the roof open, as Italy did in the last game, it stays open."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Hugh Godwin talks to France Sevens coach Frederic Pomarel about the controversial Olympics loophole that could lead to Steffon Armitage playing for Les Bleus
"If England flounder in the next World Cup the knives will be out - six-year contract or not." Tom Hamilton on the new contract for the England coaches
The All Blacks face their toughest task of the Rugby Championship at Ellis Park this weekend, writes Craig Dowd
With the deadline for World Cup ticket applications now over, Tom May outlines his hopes, gripes and wishes for next year's global gathering