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Roof puzzle for Kidney

Ireland head coach Declan Kidney has been left bemused by suggestions that his side are responsible for the Millennium Stadium roof being open for Saturday's RBS 6 Nations clash with Wales - claiming they were not asked for their preference.

The standard procedure for Wales' internationals at the Cardiff ground has been for the visiting team to be asked whether they would prefer the roof open or closed. The outcome is straightforward should both sides agree, but if the visitors differ in their view then it is their choice that prevails.

Kidney had hinted earlier in the week that Ireland may prefer the roof open, but when asked on Friday he responded by saying: "To my knowledge, the thing is we would be asked within 48 hours but we did not get any official request and we weren't asked. You can only answer the question when you are asked and that period is over now."

He added: "But the pitch looks good at the moment and a bit of fresh air never hurt anybody, so we are looking forward to playing there."

Wales assistant coach Robin McBryde had said that Ireland had requested the roof be open for a match that will decide which of the teams will remain in the title mix going into the tournament's denouement next weekend.

He had said: "It's a shame they want the roof open - we would like to have given them a warm welcome with the roof closed - but it's going to be a close game.

"I am not sure what the weather forecast is. It's a unique atmosphere, and if the weather was to play a part in the outcome of the game I think it would be a shame. There is no point having a roof on the stadium, otherwise."

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