Robin McBryde to lead Wales' coaching team on Pacific Islands tour in summer
Robin McBryde will lead Wales' coaching team on next summer's tour to the Pacific Islands.
With Wales interim head coach Rob Howley involved on the 2017 British and Irish Lions' trip to New Zealand in June and July - he is in charge this season while Warren Gatland concentrates on Lions business - Wales forwards specialist McBryde steps into the main tour role.
Specific fixtures against Tonga and Samoa are to be confirmed, but Welsh Rugby Union chief executive Martyn Phillips has confirmed that McBryde will lead the trip.
He assumes head coach responsibilities with Wales for a third time, after taking charge for the 2009 tour of the United States and Canada, and then to Japan three years ago.
Phillips said: " Rob Howley joins Warren Gatland's British and Irish Lions coaching team with our best wishes as the Lions embark upon one of the toughest and most high-profile campaigns in the world game.
"Both coaches can only benefit from the coaching experiences available to them, and in turn, we know the Wales national squad set-up will be able to reap the rewards of that experience upon their return to us.
"We have a clear strategy in Welsh rugby, with coaching and coach development a central priority at all levels of the game.
"It will be of huge benefit to Welsh rugby in the long-term that, within a small window during their coaching careers, we are able to provide significant development opportunities for Warren, Rob and Robin."
Phillips said discussions were "at an advanced stage" with a number of other individuals about the Wales tour, with a hope of confirming the full management team line-up next week.
McBryde added: " The tour is an exciting opportunity for the squad. It is always an honour to represent your country, and to do so overseas carries with it extra responsibility.
"We will be facing two passionate rugby nations and it will be a huge challenge for the players, but an opportunity for them to show what they are able to do in the red jersey.
"For me, it is another exciting opportunity to lead the team.
"It is something I have thoroughly enjoyed in the past, and I am really looking forward to doing it again at the end of the season.
"As is natural in a Lions year, we will inevitably have some senior players missing, but our focus will very much be on discovering future potential alongside maintaining current standards and, hopefully, coming away with two good performances and wins."