On This Day in 2010: Wales’ Andy Powell kicked out for drink-driving golf buggy

PA Sport Staff
·2-min read

Andy Powell was thrown out of Wales’ Six Nations squad on this day in 2010 after driving a golf buggy on the M4 motorway while unfit through drink.

Powell had played in Wales’ 31-24 victory over Scotland in Cardiff and celebrated into the early hours of the following morning.

The 28-year-old was taken into custody with another man after the golf buggy was taken from the Vale Resort where the Wales team were based for the Six Nations Championship.

Andy Powell
Andy Powell leaves Cardiff Magistrates Court in March 2010 after being banned for driving for 15 months (Barry Batchelor/PA)

Powell had been arrested at 5.40am at a service station off the M4 to the west of Cardiff, around four miles from the Vale Resort.

The Welsh Rugby Union met Powell the following morning and suspended him for behaviour “contrary to the squad’s code of conduct”.

Powell, who played for the British and Irish Lions tour of South Africa in 2009, was charged with driving a mechanically propelled vehicle while unfit through drink and appeared before Cardiff magistrates two weeks later.

Conrad Gadd, the player’s lawyer, said: “Beer is a staple of any rugby side and here there was more than a few pints of beer.

Andy Powell in court
Statement from Andy Powell after he pleaded guilty to driving a golf buggy while unfit through drink (Barry Batchelor/PA)

“Mr Powell was out until the early hours of the morning. By 5.30am he and one colleague were hungry.

“The buggy was capable of doing about 20 miles per hour but it was nowhere near that speed.

“He stayed on the hard shoulder. Someone saw them and reported it to police.”

Rugby Union – Tour Match – Cheetahs v British and Irish Lions – Vodacom Park
Andy Powell (centre) played for the British and Irish Lions on their 2009 tour of South Africa (David Davies/PA)

Brecon-born Powell pleaded guilty and as well as being banned from driving for 15 months, was fined £1,000 and ordered to pay £85 costs and a £15 victim surcharge.

He played no further part in the 2010 Six Nations and won the last of his 23 Wales caps against Scotland in February 2012.

Powell retired from playing rugby in October 2016 having played union for clubs in England, France and Wales, as well as having a short spell in rugby league.