Former Wales coach Rob Howley has apologised for breaching betting rules as he "battled demons" following the death of his sister in 2011.
The 49-year-old was banned from rugby for 18 months, with nine suspended, for placing 363 bets on 1,163 matches between November 2015 and September 2019.
"I would like to take this opportunity to apologise to all those close to me and everyone this has affected, especially the rugby community, close colleagues and above all my family.
"I am an extremely private man, and unfortunately it was this that kept me silent as I battled my demons following my sister's tragic death.
"The last few months have been immensely tough, and continued help will allow me to find the right path back to rugby, which has always been my true passion.
"I am immensely grateful for the faith and support I've received from everybody close to me."
Howley also underlined that the panel highlighted his co-operation with the investigation.
"I feel it is important for me to reiterate a number of the key facts that were highlighted and proven during the investigation."
"Mr Howley acknowledged his breach of the regulation at the first available opportunity, that he has demonstrated deep felt and genuine remorse, that he has an exemplary character and an exemplary disciplinary record (both as a player and coach).
"There was no suggestion of dishonesty or misuse of confidential information involved.
"The fact that Mr Howley had sought help from a psychologist who had diagnosed that the trigger for Mr Howley’s recreational betting had been a family tragedy and that Mr Howley had refrained from betting since his suspension."
A report released by the judicial committee revealed that Howley did not make any profit from his bets and is estimated to have lost in the region of £4,000.
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