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Scottish Rugby Union chief confident Dave Rennie will continue Glasgow success

Scottish rugby bosses believe they have made a real statement of intent by naming New Zealander Dave Rennie as Gregor Townsend's successor as Glasgow head coach.

Scottish Rugby Union chief executive Mark Dodson promised Warriors fans they would make an appointment that would carry on Townsend's excellent work when they announced his promotion to Scotland head coach earlier this week.

And they did not disappoint with the news that Rennie will take charge next summer when Townsend departs.

The 52-year-old has led Chiefs to unprecedented success in the Southern Hemisphere's elite Super Rugby competition, winning titles in his first two seasons in 2012 and 2013 and leading them to the play-offs in every subsequent campaign.

The former schoolteacher previously won a hat-trick of IRB Junior World Championships as coach of New Zealand Under-20s and looks the ideal candidate to follow Townsend, who led Warriors to the Guinness Pro12 crown in 2015 and the play-offs in each of his other three seasons in charge so far.

Rennie, who has also won two domestic BNZ cups with the Hamilton-based Chiefs, said: "The opportunity to work with such an exciting group of players at a club that has such big ambitions and a great winning culture was one I couldn't turn down.

"It is no secret I have been interested in coaching abroad and this chance with Scottish Rugby fitted the bill perfectly.

"As a coach you want to test yourself in new environments with new challenges. The work Gregor and his team have done at the Warriors speaks for itself and I am very motivated to continue that success and build the club."

Rennie added that he and his wife, Steph, were "really looking forward to a new phase in our lives".

"We are really impressed with what we have seen in Glasgow, the history, the people, the lifestyle. The Warriors are really aspirational, have good people, and have created a great culture under Gregor."

The former Wellington centre and coach has signed a two-year contract to begin next summer.

Dodson said: "It is a clear indication of the progress Scottish Rugby and Glasgow Warriors are making that we can attract a coach of Dave's experience to Scotland to work with our players.

"Gregor has developed a great winning culture at Glasgow Warriors and I'm very confident Dave will be able to build on that solid foundation to bring more success to the club.

"We have a group of talented Scottish players at Glasgow and we want to maintain their progress and this appointment will expose them to fresh ideas and new approaches to the game. Dave's experience at the Chiefs and at New Zealand age-grade level can only help to develop them and the team further."

Warriors managing director Nathan Bombrys added: "We are incredibly proud at Glasgow Warriors that Gregor will be the next Scotland national coach at the end of next season.

"Our club has a very strong culture and fantastic support from our fans, so it was important that our new head coach can help us to evolve and continue to be successful and grow our club on and off the pitch.

"The ambition of the club is demonstrated by the fact we're bringing in a championship-winning coach of the highest calibre and I look forward to working with Dave and welcoming him to Glasgow when he arrives.

"For now our focus is on preparing for the new season and putting our full support behind Gregor and his team to achieve something special this season."


From Belfast Telegraph