Gatland homeward bound: reports

by AAP

Warren Gatland will quit his post as Wales rugby coach next year and return home to New Zealand, according to a UK media report.

The Daily Mail reports Gatland will stay in New Zealand after he's coached the British and Irish Lions tour in June and July next year.

The 53-year-old former All Black, who took charge of Wales in 2007, would need to cut short a lucrative six-year extension he signed in 2013 to take him through to the next World Cup in Japan.

Dai Young would be one of the favourites to succeed Gatland. Photo: Getty ImagesaGatland is currently on an extended sabbatical from the Welsh role, allowing him to concentrate on the Lions.

His wife and two children have remained in New Zealand throughout his Welsh tenure and he has spoken previously about the hardship of coping without them.

Gatland's son Bryn, 21, was a key member of the North Harbour team who won the NPC Championship division this year.

The report said Gatland had told close friends of his plans.

It's believed former Wales prop Dai Young, the director of rugby at London club Wasps, was being lined up to replace Gatland.