Sam Warburton: Lions captain's pride at New Year's honour

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Sam Warburton: Wales and Lions flanker 'completely surprised' by OBE

British and Irish Lions captain Sam Warburton says he is "overwhelmed, privileged and very proud," after being awarded an OBE in the New Year's Honours List.

"This recognition is the pinnacle of my career," Warburton wrote in a social media post.

The 29-year-old Cardiff Blues flanker has won 74 international caps for Wales but is currently sidelined by injury.

Warburton led the Lions during the drawn Test series in New Zealand.

Warburton was also the Lions' youngest skipper at 24 before the 2-1 victory over the Wallabies in 2013.

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Welsh Rugby Union chairman Gareth Davies paid tribute to Warburton.

"He has been a magnificent servant to Wales and of course the British & Irish Lions already in his career and there is still potentially so much more to come from him," said the former Wales captain.

"His OBE is a much deserved personal honour but one that, as our national captain, Welsh rugby can also take huge collective pride in."

Welsh sport was well represented elsewhere in this year's honours list.

Former Disability Sport Wales chief executive Jonathan Morgan has also been awarded an OBE for services to disability sport in Wales. Morgan stepped down in June 2017 after a 15-year tenure.

Since Morgan's appointment in 2002, grassroots participation opportunities increased across Wales from 1200 to over 1.4 million per year by 2016.

Welsh cycling coach Alan Davis, who helped the likes of Olympic team pursuit gold medallists Owain Doull and Elinor Barker as youngsters while also riding with Geraint Thomas, becomes an MBE.

Davies is the head coach of Maindy Flyers youth cycling club in Cardiff.

Helen Phillips Chair of Commonwealth Games Wales and Gymnastics has also been recognised with an MBE.

Former Wales and Manchester United youth team coach Eric Harrison - who helped develop the 'Class of 92' including the likes of David Beckham, Paul Scholes, Gary and Phil Neville, Nicky Butt and Welshman Ryan Giggs, receives an MBE.

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