Two of Glasgow Warriors’ top coaches will go with Gregor Townsend when he takes over as Scotland head coach
Defensive guru Matt Taylor and Dan McFarland, the forwards coach are expected to team up again with Townsend at Murrayfield next summer.
And departing Scotland head coach Vern Cotter is set to take Nathan Hines with him to French Top 14 club Montpellier. Hines has already enjoyed two spells as a player in the Top 14, with Perpignan and Clermont, and the two men are close after Cotter gave Hines his first break in coaching.
Dave Rennie, currently coach of Waikato Chiefs in New Zealand and twice a winner of the Super Rugby title, will take over the Scotstoun hot seat from Townsend and, if rumours from Murrayfield are correct, will stick with existing resources.
That would mean a place at Glasgow for the current Scotland pair of Jason O’Halloran and Jonathan Humphreys, as the Warriors’ backs and forwards’ coaches respectively.
That would result in a “dream team” of Rennie, O’Halloran and Humphreys, who between them have helped win five titles on either side of the globe.
Rennie is the only coach to have won the Super Rugby title on debut, with the Chiefs in 2011, and he proved that was no fluke by backing the win up with another the following year. Ironically O’Halloran got his break in coaching as head of the Manawatu Turbos when Rennie left the club to join the Chiefs.
The appointment of such experienced coaches would seem to underline Murrayfield’s bias towards their West Coast franchise which has, after all, rewarded them with one Pro12 title.
Where all these moves leave assistant Glasgow coaches Mike Blair and Kenny Murray is not immediately clear but given the amount of baggage that comes with a modern professional team one or both men could yet be kept on perhaps as a defensive expert.
And after capping the Stormers’ Huw Jones in the summer, Murrayfield are eyeing up another Edinburgh born “Englishman” in the form of Wasps’ Josh Bassett. The winger had an eventful weekend last time out against Saracens, scoring a try and then collecting a yellow card. Scotland are not endowed with an excess of wingers and the speedy Bassett may come to the same conclusion.