Borthwick, Farrell and Howley to coach Lions

Date published: December 7 2016

Steve Borthwick, Andy Farrell and Rob Howley have been named as assistant coaches for the British and Irish Lions tour to New Zealand.

Borthwick (forwards), Farrell (defence) and Howley (backs) were unveiled at a press conference in Ireland on Wednesday.

Gatland hinted that further additions may come in the following months.

“I think over the next couple of months I want to add some specialist people in the coaching set-up. I’m absolutely delighted with the quality that I’ve got here at the moment,” he said.

“There’s no rush at the moment, it’s just a case of making sure I speak to the right people and hopefully we’re able to do that and get their permission and their release over the next couple of months.

“What we learned from 2013 is the pressure on the coaching staff. It’s preparing two teams for two games each week, it’s relentless, it’s tough.”

Farrell stressed the need for the squad to get up to speed as quickly as possible.

“As a group we are going to be tested across the board against the number one ranked team in the world. The challenge for us will be to get on the same page as quickly as possible, appreciate fully the danger they pose and find solutions to their attacking threats.”

Borthwick meanwhile was buoyed by the performances of the home nations during the recent November Tests.

“We’ve seen some fantastic results from the Home Nations in the recent autumn series and some brilliant performances by the players. That all bodes well for the Lions.”

Howley added that he hopes to draw from his previous experiences coaching the side in South Africa in 2009 and in Australia in 2013.

“As a coach, the experiences in 2009 and 2013 were hugely rewarding and I’d like to thank the WRU for once again supporting the role and understanding the benefits we can take forward from this opportunity.”