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Scottish chiefs turn to ex-England rugby coach

  • Story Highlights
  • Andy Robinson appointed new coach of Scotland's national rugby team
  • Robinson replaces Frank Hadden, who resigned in April after poor results
  • The 45-year-old has played for and coached England's national side
  • He rebuilt his career with Edinburgh after being sacked by England
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(CNN) -- The Scottish Rugby Union has appointed Andy Robinson, formerly coach of bitter rivals England, as the new national team boss.

Andy Robinson will be seeking to revive the fortunes of Scotland's struggling rugby side.

Andy Robinson will be seeking to revive the fortunes of Scotland's struggling rugby side.

The 45-year-old won eight caps as a flanker for England, and was assistant coach in Clive Woodward's 2003 World Cup-winning set-up before taking over for an ill-fated reign himself in 2004, winning just nine of 22 matches.

Robinson returned to top-class coaching with Celtic League team Edinburgh in 2007, and has sufficiently impressed Scottish officials in the 20 months since then to win favor as the replacement for Frank Hadden.

He had been part of Hadden's backroom staff, and had already been chosen to coach Scotland A this summer. Hadden resigned on April 2 after Scotland again struggled in the Six Nations, finishing second from bottom with just one win from five outings.

Robinson was delighted to be given the chance to return to the international stage.

"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," he told the SRU Web site.

"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."

Robinson is believed to have headed off the likes of South Africa's World Cup-winning coach Jake White and former Australia boss Eddie Jones for the job.

Former Scotland captain and British and Irish Lion Gordon Bulloch was part of the interview panel that determined the appointment.

"Andy was the outstanding candidate from a quite exceptional shortlist which underlines the allure of coaching the Scotland team," he told the SRU's Web site.

"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."

Scottish Rugby chief executive Gordon McKie said he was confident Robinson would prove to be successful.

"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," McKie said.

"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."

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