Welsh veto Griffiths coach role at Widnes

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The Independent Online

The Welsh Rugby Union has told Clive Griffiths, who is emplyed as a defence coach for the Welsh national team, that it will not release him from the remaining year of his contract on its staff to take up the vacant coaching position at Widnes.

The club, which sacked Neil Kelly in June and have been looking for a successor since, approached Griffiths, who was the coach of the Wales rugby league side, but now looks like having to continue its search elsewhere.

The Rugby Football League is investigating an incident in which Batley's Bulldog mascot was ordered from the field during the National League Two match at Hull KR on Sunday.

The referee, Colin Morris, asked for the mascot to be escorted off after an exchange between the two.

"We are waiting to see what he is meant to have done, but we presume there must have been some sort of gesture towards the referee," said the Batley chairman, Kevin Nicholas.

"The mascot has been with us for years. He's of previous good character - in fact, he's a prison officer at Wakefield - but I suppose he could be in the dog house over this.

"We had two players sin-binned for dissent during the game, so really this makes three," Nicholas added.

Warrington's Mike Forshaw, who is to take up a new role as the League's lifestyle mentor for young players at the end of this season, could see the rest of his playing career blighted by injury. Forshaw has been told that knee ligament damage could keep him out for the next four weeks.

The Castleford winger-centre Paul Mellor is to return to Australia on a one-year contract with Cronulla Sharks.