Ex-England coach digs into coach adverts about ‘contact skills’

Former England boss Brian Ashton has had a glimpse of the number of contact skills coach recruitment adverts in rugby, grumbling that he never sees job vacancies for coaches offensive space. The 75-year-old, who led his country as head coach to the 2007 World Cup final after working under Clive Woodward as well as Ireland and Bath, is widely regarded as the one of the most visionary coaches in the world game.

His comments on rugby job vacancies came in an article Ashton posted on his Linkedin feed. He wrote: “Fascinated to see advertisements etc. for contact skills coaches at Rugby Union. Never see any to attack space trainers……. !!! ”

Loved by former Ireland and Scotland internationals Kevin Maggs and Nick de Luca, former England manager Ashton’s post received comments from Grant Doorey, the well-travelled coach who worked with him. Tonga, New Zealand International Rugby Academy. , Toulon, London Irish, Blues, Japan, Bourgoin and Italy.

Mike Brown | Roots of rugby

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Mike Brown | Roots of rugby

“Interesting overview Brian Ashton,” he replied. “It’s weird to see contact skills working independent of offense or defense trainers. They need to be mixed and centered around the overall philosophy. Imagine if we were actively developing the ability to create, attack and manipulate space as part of an attack mentality with triple threat options.

“It seems logical, but we stay siloed in our approach and measure the parts of the game that improve a ‘win-win’ approach to coaching where we only focus on our piece of the puzzle.”

Ashton’s previous post on Linkedin also generated a lot of comments. Last month he wrote: “Great discussion today with an international player. Focused on the question: how many coaches improve by actively listening to their players? »

Former England full-back Mike Brown, who made his 2007 Test debut under Ashton, was among many to respond, writing: ‘Not many in my experience…’ Legendary Wallabies World Cup winner David Campese said added: “Brian, I think nothing.”


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