The Welsh Rugby Union has appointed Robin McBryde as caretaker Head Coach of Wales for the Summer tour of North America and Canada in 2009.
He steps up to the senior role for the first time in place of Warren Gatland who will be touring South Africa with the British and Irish Lions.
Robin McBryde will be joined on the tour by senior team regulars, Assistant Coach Neil Jenkins, Conditioning Coach Mark Bennett, Team Manager Alan Phillips and Analysts Rhodri Bown and Andrew Hughes along with physiotherapists Mark Davies and Hywel Griffiths.
The coaching team will be supplemented by one extra caretaker Assistant Coach, plus one more conditioner who will all be appointed in the near future.
McBryde said: "It is a great honour to lead Wales on tour for two important Test matches which will prove to be a challenging test of our progress as a squad.
"We know the American Eagles and the Canadians will be tough opposition and they will fully test us on their home turf.
"It is inevitable that some members of our senior squad will be heading for South Africa as Lions, so the players who travel with us will be determined to make the test starting positions their own.
"This is a great opportunity to step up and for some players to prove that our coaching strategies and processes are creating real competition for the coveted Welsh jersey.
"I will be working closely with Warren and the team in the preparation phase for the tour, but the chance to be the man in charge for the games is a challenge I am relishing.
"We work collectively as a coaching team for Wales and Warren knows my style and my input into the management system we operate."
Head Coach Warren Gatland praised Mcbryde as a first class coach who also possesses the senior management skills to deliver success for Wales.
He said: "Robin has proved he is entirely worthy of this opportunity to step up and take on the ultimate responsibility as coach at international level.
"He is widely known for his talent and uncompromising qualities as a player, but all of us in the national coaching team know he has a lot more to offer Wales.
"Robin has the technical expertise, the strategic understanding and the man management skills to take on new responsibilities and challenges as a coach.
"Part of my role is to structure a coaching succession policy and that will only be achieved if key individuals are given the opportunities to develop under their skills under pressure.
Nearly 40 players were involved in the first Wales Under 18 training session of the season. WRU National Performance Manager Gethin Watts is excited at the potential shown by the group and expects the Regional Under 18 Championship to hone their skills even further.