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Page last updated at 21:41 GMT, Thursday, 1 April 2010 22:41 UK

Denis Betts plays down England Rugby League speculation

Richard Agar
Richard Agar is in his third season at the KC Stadium as Hull FC coach

Hull FC coach Richard Agar has ruled himself out of the running to become the next England coach after signing a new two-year deal at the KC Stadium.

Bradford coach Steve McNamara and Harlequins' Brian McDermott have also been linked with the job.

And ex-Wigan and Great Britain legend Denis Betts, now on the backroom staff at rugby union side Gloucester, has dismissed speculation about him.

But Agar will stop at Hull, admitting: "It was an easy decision to make."

Agar's current contract was due to run out at the end of the season but he will now stay in charge at the KC Stadium at least until the end of 2012.

Agar, who joined the club in 2005 and took over as head coach nearly two years ago, added: "I am pleased that the club have shown the confidence in me to succeed at Hull FC.

"Time is something that many coaches don't get and I am delighted I have been shown that time.

It's nice to be linked with it because I'm English and I've got a rugby league background and the job's available, but it's purely speculation

Denis Betts on the England rugby league coach vacancy

"Now it is up to us as the coaching staff to repay that faith and ultimately the way to do that is to win some silverware."

Agar guided Hull to the Challenge Cup final at Wembley in 2008 with an injury-ravaged squad.

But, having languished in the lower reaches of Super League in the last two years, the close-season recruitment of players like Craig Fitzgibbon, Mark O'Meley and Sean Long has helped turn the club's fortunes around.

The 38-year-old former Featherstone Rovers, Widnes and Dewsbury stand-off was thought to have been one of four men interviewed recently for the national coaching role vacated by Tony Smith last November.

And Agar's extended commitment to Hull effectively leaves the Rugby Football League are looking for a full-time coach to take over in time for the 12 June international against France.

Betts, 40, now skills and development coach at Gloucester, has also been earmarked.

But he told BBC Radio Gloucestershire: "It's just speculation.

Denis Betts
Rugby league legend Denis Betts has been at Gloucester since January 2006

"I think it's one of those there's a job available.

"It's nice to be linked with it because I'm English and I've got a rugby league background and the job's available, but it's purely speculation."

Betts, who played 32 times for Great Britain and scored over 500 points in 367 games for Wigan, still has another year to run on his current contract at Kingsholm.

Betts was at Central Park between 1986 and 1995, before going to New Zealand to spend two seasons with Auckland, then returning to see out his career at Wigan.



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