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Page last updated at 11:21 GMT, Thursday, 4 June 2009 12:21 UK

Scots name Robinson as head coach


News conference - Andy Robinson

Andy Robinson has been named as Scotland's head coach and says they will benefit from lessons he learned in his unsuccessful spell with England.

The 45-year-old has signed a three-year deal, leaving Magners League outfit Edinburgh to succeed Frank Hadden.

"I learned a lot after losing my role with England," he said. "I spent six months of reflection and went deep into my soul to rediscover my passion.

"And I have been successful in the last couple of years with Edinburgh."

Robinson recognised that the idea of an Englishman leading the Scotland team could raise eyebrows among some because of the traditional rivalry between the two nations.

But he told BBC Scotland he was sure that winning performances would win over any doubters among the fans.

Robinson led Bath to Heineken Cup success before his two years in charge of England, with whom he won just nine of his 22 matches.

Robinson thrives on Scotland challenge

However, after 20 months with Edinburgh, he guided the team to second place in the Magners League and has already been part of Hadden's backroom team with the Scotland squad.

"I have enjoyed my time with Edinburgh immensely and to be appointed Scotland head coach is something that I am greatly honoured and excited about," said Robinson.

"This is a wonderful opportunity for me to get back into Test rugby.

"I have enjoyed being part of the national and A team set-up in Scotland in the past two seasons and working with the players has fuelled my optimism.

"I am confident that I can take them and the national team onto bigger and better things.

"With the World Cup in New Zealand in 2011, I believe we have a crop of players who can really challenge the world's best and preparation for that starts now."

McKie hails Robinson track record

Robinson had already been chosen to coach Scotland A this summer.

"I'm looking forward to leading Scotland A into the IRB Nations Cup in Romania next week and thereafter preparing for our Autumn Tests at Murrayfield against Fiji, Australia and Argentina," he said.

"I am very proud to be taking up the Scotland head coach role and I can assure all our supporters both at home and abroad that I will be doing everything I possibly can to bring success to the national team."

Robinson made his name as a flanker at Bath, for whom he signed in 1986, captaining them to a league and cup double in 1992 before eventually moving into coaching the side.

As assistant to Sir Clive Woodward, he helped England win the World Cup in 2003, and took over the Twickenham hot-seat the following year.

And, despite the disappointing spell that followed as Woodward's successor, the Scottish Rugby Union's five-man selection panel was obviously impressed with his work with Edinburgh.

1964: Born Taunton, 3 April
1986: Joins Bath
1988: Makes England debut against Australia
1992: Leads Bath to league and cup double in first season as captain
1997: Appointed Bath coach after resignation of Brian Ashton
1997: Sir Clive Woodward installed as his assistant at Bath
1998: Leads Bath to Heineken Cup glory with a 19-18 win over Brive
2000: Appointed assistant England coach
2000: Named as assistant coach for 2001 Lions tour to Australia
2003: Helps England secure the World Cup
October 2004: Appointed England coach
November 2006: Sacked as England coach
October 2007: Appointed Edinburgh coach
May 2009: Leads Edinburgh to second in Magners League

Chief executive Gordon McKie said: "Andy is an ambitious and highly committed coach and I am confident that he will bring success to Scotland.

"Andy has proved himself at every level of the game and we are thrilled that he will now be leading the Scotland team as we look towards the challenges of the next three years, including the 2011 World Cup.

"He has been part of the Scottish Rugby family for the past two years and has brought success both to Edinburgh Rugby, with their highest-ever Magners League finish in successive seasons, and has also guided the Scotland A team to notable successes.

"Andy has a well-established relationship with many of the Scotland players and has an understanding of professional rugby at the highest level."

Hadden resigned on 2 April after another poor Six Nations campaign and the likes of Edinburgh captain Chris Paterson and former Scotland winger Kenny Logan were quick to suggest that Robinson was the natural successor.

Jake White and Eddie Jones, who led South Africa and Australia to World Cup finals, were also on the shortlist, but the panel - comprising Andy Irvine, Andy Nicol, Gordon Bulloch, SRU chair Alan Munro and McKie - chose a man they had come to trust.

Former Scotland captain and British and Irish Lion Bulloch said: "Andy was the outstanding candidate from a quite exceptional shortlist, which underlines the allure of coaching the Scotland team.

"I know from having had the privilege of his coaching and guidance on Lions tours that he is passionate about his rugby, is a skilled communicator and has values and an ethos which are absolutely at one with developing a winning Scotland team."

Robinson will be supported in his new role by Scotland's current defence coach, Graham Steadman, with further appointments to follow.

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see also
Gunners chief bullish over future
05 Jun 09 |  Edinburgh
Is Robinson right for Scotland?
04 Jun 09 |  Scottish
Scotland consider White and Jones
18 May 09 |  Scottish
Robinson praises Edinburgh squad
18 May 09 |  Edinburgh
Hastings fearful on Robinson exit
13 May 09 |  Edinburgh
Logan backs Robinson for Scotland
07 Apr 09 |  Rugby Union
Scotland narrow head coach search
29 Apr 09 |  Scottish
Robinson unsure on Scots vacancy
04 Apr 09 |  Scottish
Strong interest in top Scots job
24 Apr 09 |  Scottish
The rise and fall of Frank Hadden
02 Apr 09 |  Scottish
Hadden and Scotland part company
02 Apr 09 |  Scottish
Hadden non-committal over future
21 Mar 09 |  Rugby Union
Robinson named coach of Edinburgh
01 Oct 07 |  Edinburgh
Robinson is forced out by England
29 Nov 06 |  English

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