Gatland apologises for "just banter" comment over Joe Marler's taunt at Samson Lee

England prop had called his Wales counterpart "gypsy boy" during Six Nations clash

Warren Gatland, Cheltenham, Wales

Wales head coach Warren Gatland at Cheltenham ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Wales head coach Warren Gatland has apologised for suggesting derogatory words about the heritage of his player Samson Lee should be considered "banter".

England prop Joe Marler is facing a ban after an incident with Lee during Saturday's Six Nations game at Twickenham, in which he called the Wales player "gypsy boy".

Gatland says he was trying to take the focus away from Lee, who has accepted an apology from Marler.

"I don't condone racism of any kind," said the Wales coach.

Lee says he doesn't believe the comments from Marler were "racist in intent".

"I personally believe the comments to have been intended as banter and accepted Joe's apology," he said.