Belfast Telegraph

Friday 26 December 2014

Baxter and Gustard join England set-up

Rob Baxter will be part of England's summer tour of Argentina
Rob Baxter will be part of England's summer tour of Argentina

Exeter director of rugby Rob Baxter and Saracens defence specialist Paul Gustard will join Stuart Lancaster's revamped England management team for the summer tour of Argentina.

Baxter and Gustard have been recruited to fill in for Graham Rowntree and Andy Farrell, who will be on British and Irish Lions duty at the same time England embark on their four-match, two-Test trip to South America.

Lancaster will also be supported by Mike Catt, the attacking skills coach who landed a permanent role in the England set-up after impressing on last summer's tour of South Africa.

Baxter masterminded Exeter's rise from the Championship into the Heineken Cup and he was named Premiership Rugby's coach of the year for the 2011-12 season.

Gustard runs the meanest defence in the Aviva Premiership, with table-topping Saracens having conceded just 17 tries in 18 matches so far this season.

The Rugby Football Union said in a statement: "Exeter Chiefs director of rugby Rob Baxter and Saracens defence and forwards coach Paul Gustard will join the England coaching team for the tour to Argentina in June."

Lancaster added: "We are delighted to have two quality coaches who have come through the English system for what will be a hugely-significant tour for us, and a big thank you should go to Saracens, Exeter and Premiership Rugby for supporting England in this way.

"It was important that we found two coaches who could mirror the skill set of Graham and Andy while they are away and come in and keep developing the players within our system.

"Paul, having worked together with Andy at Saracens, already has a good understanding of how we operate and Rob, who has done a great job in developing a very competitive Exeter pack, will pick up the set piece and breakdown.

"Both will work alongside Mike Catt as part of our integrated coaching team and we are looking forward to them joining us after their club commitments finish on what is an important tour in our development as a team."

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