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Page last updated at 13:30 GMT, Wednesday, 30 June 2010 14:30 UK

Sir Ian McGeechan joins Bath as performance director


McGeechan relishing 'exciting' Bath role

Bath have appointed Sir Ian McGeechan as their new performance director on a two-year contract.

McGeechan has been head coach on four British and Irish Lions tours and was at the helm for Scotland, Northampton and, most recently, Wasps.

Last season McGeechan worked as advisor at Bath's fierce rivals Gloucester.

McGeechan, who coached the Lions to two series wins, told BBC Radio Bristol: "This is a different challenge but a very exciting one."

He added: "What we try to put in place now is something that you want to be strong long-term and enhance what's already here."

McGeechan coached the Lions to series wins in Australia in 1989 and in South Africa in 1997 and oversaw Scotland's famous Grand Slam win in 1990.

He masterminded Wasps' Heineken Cup, Premiership and Anglo-Welsh Cup wins as the club's director of rugby but has not had a full-time role in the game since leaving the London club following the 2009 Lions tour.

"I'm excited by the whole concept of a club which has great traditions and, in a professional era, really professionalising the support facilities and the environment the players can be in - and hopefully take that on to the field," continued McGeechan.

"This is a different challenge but it's a very exciting one. What we try to put in place now is something that you want to be strong long-term and enhance what's already here.

"We'll be trying to make that extra step to get to finals and win things and get that little edge which allows Bath to have the silverware again."

It's a different but exciting challenge

Sir Ian McGeechan

McGeechan's latest high-profile rugby job was announced at Bath's new headquarters in the Somerset countryside at Farleigh House.

He added: "Bath have a very clear vision for the future development of the club and have made a clear statement of intent with the new headquarters at Farleigh House.

"I am delighted to become part of a club that is developing the infrastructure on and off the pitch to achieve long-term success and become one of the strongest clubs in the Europe.

"I am really looking forward to working with Steve Meehan, Martin Haag and Brad Davis, as well as the academy and the strength and conditioning teams to assist wherever I can to ensure that this squad and club continues to grow from strength to strength."

As a player, McGeechan represented Scotland 32 times and toured with the Lions in 1974 and 1977.

He will begin his new role at Bath on 12 July.


"As part of our continued commitment to the success of Bath Rugby, we are delighted that Sir Ian will be joining us," said Bath Rugby chairman Bruce Craig.

"His contribution to rugby union is unrivalled and he has been at the forefront of rugby development for many years now."

Bath coach Steve Meehan added: "I have always enjoyed talking rugby with Ian whenever we have met up, so to now have him working with us is fantastic.

"We are keen to build upon our great finish to last season and adding Ian, with all his experience, to an already strong coaching and support staff will help us to even greater success."

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