Gregor Townsend has glass removed from front of coaches' box

Matt Taylor has welcomed head coach Gregor Townsend's decision to turn the home coaching box at BT Murrayfield al fresco by removing the front glass panelling.

Matt Williams was the first Scotland coach to use the glass-fronted box. Picture: Neil Hanna
Matt Williams was the first Scotland coach to use the glass-fronted box. Picture: Neil Hanna

It was Australian Matt Williams who first started basing the coaching team in the box behind the press and royal boxes at the back of the West Stand’s lower tier when he took over in 2004. The glass has lived a charmed life over the years, with Andy Robinson famous for beating the panes in frustration.

Townsend has decided to remove the barrier and let his staff soak up the atmosphere.

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“I like what Gregor has done,” said the defence coach.

“You get a real feeling of the game and you can actually hear some of the calls which was quite good. Gregor is very aware of the surroundings and is wanting to get 
a feel for the atmosphere.”

Taylor added with a smile: “You’ve got to be careful what you say with all you media guys there in front of us. Can’t be letting too many swear words out or talk about certain things. I’ve got better in terms of keeping calm.”

Taylor was suspected of kicking the door to the box off its hinges a couple of years ago but was keen to plead his innocence.

“No that wasn’t me,” he said with a chuckle. “That was another fellow coach but I got the blame. I got in trouble with my mother when she read that in the paper but it wasn’t me.

“I’ve been in all sorts of coaching boxes over the years. There’s been some lively ones. Gregor is pretty calm and measured.

“You’d like to be able to do a lot more when you’re up in the box in terms of getting messages. You get that short time at half time to make some adjustments.

“The reality of it is that on the field, 95 per cent is up to them working out what they need to do better. You help them as much as you can, but it’s pretty limited.”