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Gatland offered Lions job for Australia tour

WARREN Gatland is in line to become just the second overseas coach to lead the British & Irish Lions on tour after being offered the chance to take charge of next year’s trip to Australia.

It is understood that the Wales coach was interviewed for the role of head coach, along with Ireland’s Declan Kidney and Scotland’s Andy Robinson, in London last week and is set to follow in the footsteps of fellow New Zealander Graham Henry. Henry, who coached New Zealand to World Cup glory last year, was in charge of Wales when he led the Lions on their 2001 tour of Australia, where they lost the Test series 2-1 despite a resounding first Test win in Brisbane.

Gatland, 48, has previous Lions experience, having been part of the backroom staff for the 2009 tour to South Africa. The Lions plan to unveil their choice of head coach at the end of next month or the start of May.