Belfast Telegraph

Home Sport Rugby

Lancaster ready to make his case

Stuart Lancaster will outline his blueprint for how England can win the 2015 Rugby World Cup when he has his interview for the job of head coach on Thursday afternoon.

Reports state that Nick Mallett, the former South Africa and Italy coach, is also due to meet the Rugby Football Union on Thursday.

Mallett was first contacted by the RFU over the job in December and he would fit the brief of an experienced coach to lead England into their home World Cup but Lancaster has a groundswell of support after restoring a sense of pride and respect in the national team during his successful stint as interim coach.

Lancaster took the reins in the wake of England's disastrous World Cup campaign and built a new team that finished second in the RBS 6 Nations championship.

Having laid those foundations, Lancaster believes he has the qualities and the vision required to bridge any experience gap and continue at the helm.

"I absolutely believe we can win the 2015 World Cup," Lancaster said. "I now have to convince the interview panel I am the right person for the job. I think it is important for whoever is getting interviewed to talk about the long-term plans both on and off the field."

Lancaster will pitch for the construction of a national centre of excellence, which would act as a training base for England and provide indoor and outdoor facilities for national age-grade teams.

The former Leeds director of rugby also wants the RFU and Aviva Premiership clubs to jointly manage high-performance development programmes for all elite players.

Lancaster has already earmarked a group of contenders for the 2015 World Cup squad - stars of the future like Joe Launchbury, George Ford, Joel Tomkins and Anthony Watson - which he has projected will have a total of 663 caps.

"If we look at previous winners of the World Cup, Australia in 1999 had a total of caps 622 in their starting XV, England had 638 in 2003, South Africa had 668 [in 2007] and New Zealand had 709 last year," Lancaster said.


From Belfast Telegraph