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Lancaster appointed England head coach

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Stuart Lancaster was today (Thursday) appointed England Rugby Head Coach until the end of January 2016.

Lancaster, who guided England to second place in the 2012 RBS 6 Nations, becomes permanent Head Coach with immediate effect following unanimous RFU Board ratification this morning.

Rugby Football Union Chief Executive Ian Ritchie said: “We have been through a rigorous and global selection process and are confident that Stuart is the right person to lead England Rugby forward into the 2015 Rugby World Cup. He has shown throughout the RBS 6 Nations and subsequently in both interview and other conversations I, as chairman of the advisory panel, have had with him that he has the skills and vision needed in the England Head Coach.

“I would also like to thank the advisory panel for their time and invaluable advice during the course of the process. I have been very lucky to be able to draw upon great rugby expertise and for that I am grateful.

“I am sure everyone in England will join me in congratulating Stuart on his appointment. He can be assured of my support and everyone in the Union as he embarks on what we all hope will be a successful period for English rugby.”

The 42-year-old Cumbrian said: “I am immensely honoured and proud to accept this role. From the hundreds of messages I received during the Six Nations I know what supporting England means to millions of people and I am privileged to be involved. The players, coaches and the management were superb during the tournament and it’s down to them that we made such positive steps from when we first met up in Leeds. The challenge now is to take this squad and the players we will see emerge forward to 2015. It is one that I can’t wait to get stuck into.

“We have a massive task ahead of us in South Africa this summer and we have 37 games before that first World Cup match on home soil, so every second counts in developing players who can win that tournament - which has to be the ultimate aim.

“I want to thank Ian and the panel for giving me the chance to explain my vision for England Rugby and, with their backing, I feel very positive about the future.”

BORN 09.10.69 | Penrith, Cumbria
Stuart Lancaster was appointed last December as England’s Interim Head Coach for the 2012 RBS 6 Nations Championship. All three away matches produced victories over Scotland, Italy and France and a home win over Ireland. Prior to that he had been England Saxons Head Coach for the past four years as part of his role as the RFU Head of Elite Player Development. A flanker and Leeds captain at Headingley from 1992-2000 he was the Academy manager there from its inception in 2001 until 2005. He was appointed as director of rugby and led Leeds back into the Premiership following a National One title winning season in 2006-07. He first laced up his boots when aged 10 at St Bees School in Whitehaven and became the first Leeds player to appear in a century of games for the club founded in 1991 from the amalgamation of Headingley and Roundhay. A former PE teacher he holds the Elite Coaching Level 5 qualification and is the assistant coach of West Park Leeds Under-11s.