Rob Howley will lead Wales on their tour to Australia as Caretaker Manager after Warren Gatland was ruled out of being available for the beginning of the series. Gatland suffered severe injuries to his feet after a fall in New Zealand earlier this month, with the expectation at the time being that he would have recovered for the start of the Tests in June.
But following surgery on his right calcaneus (heel), the Wales coach needs to remain at his home in Hamilton until he regains full mobility, which at this stage makes it unlikely that he will be fit for the first Test on June the 9th, but possibly for the 2nd and 3rd tests where he would act in a supporting capacity. Howley will therefore combine with Shaun Edwards and Robin McBryde in preparing the squad, in what is seen as a good move to develop his experience at international level looking forward for when Gatland is picked to coach the Lions in 2013.
How big a blow is this for Wales to not have Gatland with them?