Saturday 10 December 2016

Former England head coach Stuart Lancaster joins Leinster's backroom team

Published 05/09/2016 | 09:43

Leinster have announced the capture of former England head coach Stuart Lancaster.

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The 46-year-old, who stepped down as England boss last November in the wake of the team's dismal World Cup showing, has joined the three-time European Cup winners on a contract that starts immediately and lasts until the end of the season.

Leinster turned to Lancaster after defence coach Kurt McQuilkin left the province's coaching staff this summer to return to New Zealand for family reasons.

Speaking to leinsterrugby.ie Leinster Rugby Head Coach Leo Cullen said: "The sad departure of Kurt McQuilkin due to family reasons has brought about an opportunity to bring in somebody new to the Leinster Rugby coaching team.

"Stuart brings a wealth of experience and is a highly respected figure in world rugby. We are all looking forward to having Stuart join our team and together helping the players maximise their potential as a group.”

Leinster Rugby CEO Mick Dawson confirmed that former England head coach Lancaster would join the Leinster Rugby coaching team as a Senior Coach with immediate effect until the end of the season.

Commenting on the appointment Dawson said: "We are always looking at options around resources but once we were made aware of Kurt McQuilkin's departure, we narrowed our focus and we are delighted that Stuart has agreed to come on board.

"I know, having spoken at length to Stuart, that he is excited by the challenge of getting into club rugby again and the day to day interaction with players. His first session with Leo, Girvan, John and the players will be later on this afternoon.

"We welcome Stuart to the club. I think our supporters are going to be excited by this announcement and we wish him all the very best for the season ahead.”

Lancaster was appointed the RFU’s Head of Elite Player Development in 2008, a post which involved coaching the England Saxons, after a spell with Leeds Carnegie and took on the caretaker role of coaching the full national side in the autumn of 2011 when Martin Johnson resigned following England's elimination by France at the quarter-final stage of the 2011 World Cup.

After an impressive first Six Nations campaign, Lancaster was awarded the England head coach's job on a full-time basis. At the helm for four Six Nations championships, Lancaster's England lost only one match in the tournament each year but failed to convince that they were genuine World Cup contenders.

At home in 2015, defeats by Wales and Australia left them as onlookers at their own party and England's stuttering progress under Lancaster contrasts sharply with Eddie Jones' triumph in winning a Grand Slam and a series in Australia in his first seven months as Lancaster's successor.

Since leaving the England job Lancaster has had a series of placements, working with the Atlanta Falcons, the FA and British Cycling.

Leinster face Glasgow Warriors in the second round of the Guinness PRO12 on Saturday, having began their campaign with a 20-8 victory over Benetton Treviso on Friday. Leinster have reached the final of the PRO12 nine times in its 15-year history, winning four.

Leinster Rugby Coaching Team:

Leo Cullen: Head Coach

Stuart Lancaster: Senior Coach

Girvan Dempsey: Assistant Coach

John Fogarty: Assistant Coach

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