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Keen looks for winning formula

The architect of Great Britain's Olympic success is confident he can help England's rugby team mount a sustained challenge to New Zealand's global dominance.

Peter Keen, the former performance director of UK Sport, has been recruited by the Rugby Football Union to conduct a review of England's elite structure.

"I have been asked by an organisation who want to win to come in and see how it can be improved," Keen said. "In New Zealand's world it is possible to win 82% of Test matches and that is what you are aiming for. Bring it on."

Keen developed the high performance system at UK Sport that led to Britain winning 19 gold medals at the Beijing Olympics and a remarkable 29 in London. The RFU will hope Keen can have a similar impact on English rugby, not just in the immediate build-up to the 2015 World Cup on home soil but beyond.

Keen believes vehemently that the right structures, management and commitment to supporting athletes can virtually guarantee success on the pitch. His motto, borrowed from the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, is "Lead To Serve".

Keen and Sir Ian McGeechan will focus on the playing side of the RFU's professional rugby department, managed by Rob Andrew, which oversees the age-group and junior England teams.

The review will look at management structures and whether both the system and the people running it are maximising the talent available.

Keen said: "At its heart this is a very simple thing.

"It just needs people to be willing to sometimes admit they got it wrong, commit to working together for the athletes because when they get it right everything else looks pretty good."

The need for a review was initially established in the poisonous aftermath of England's failed World Cup campaign and has been pressed for by the Professional Games Board. England coach Stuart Lancaster is understood to have welcomed the implementation of the review, which is due to be concluded at the start of November.

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