Borthwick joins England rugby team as forwards coach

Borthwick joins England rugby team as forwards coach

After masterminding Japan's breakthrough performances at the recent Rugby World Cup, Eddie Jones & Steve Borthwick have been reunited in England's restructured coaching set-up.

Borthwick, a former England captain, was hired as the forwards coach on Tuesday in the first appointment to Jones' backroom staff.

"Steve has a huge amount of international experience as a player & a captain," Jones said, "and his coaching in Japan in recent years shows he can obtain the best out of the players at the highest level."

p>England is in the process of overhauling its coaching staff after a humiliating Rugby World Cup campaign where it became the first host team to fail to advance from the pool stage. Stuart Lancaster was fired as head coach last month — & was replaced by Jones — while assistant coaches Mike Catt, Graham Rowntree & Andy Farrell were released on Monday.

Borthwick, who played 57 times for England from 2001-10 & was captain in 21 of those games, worked alongside Jones with Japan for three years. At the World Cup, the Brave Blossoms beat South Africa 34-32 in the pool stage in arguably the biggest shock in international rugby, & won three of its four pool matches.

Borthwick was widely praised for his tactical astuteness at the lineout & in the scrum, enabling Japan's forwards to prosper against some of the world's best packs.

"He's a very analytical guy," Jones said. "He loves rugby & he loves the set-piece. We've received a satisfactory working relationship. He's very much a detail guy, so works well with the way I approach things."

The 36-year-old Borthwick had been working as a coach at second-tier English team Bristol since the World Cup. Bristol said on Tuesday that it hasn't agreed to let Borthwick join England, & did not donate England's Rugby Football Union permission to speak to him.

"Bristol Rugby will take all reasonable actions as necessary to protect the club's position," Bristol said in a statement, saying Borthwick is subject to a recently signed long-term contract.

On Sunday, English club Saracens said its defense & forwards coach, Paul Gustard, is considering the offer of a role as assistant coach in England's new regime. Jones gave Gustard his first coaching role in 2008 while at Saracens, where Borthwick moreover played & coached.

England's first game under Jones is against Scotland in the Six Nations on Feb. 6.

Source: “Associated Press”