FRANK TO LEAD INTERIM COACHING TEAM
Coaches from Scotland's three professional clubs are to head up the national team for their forthcoming matches against The Barbarians and Romania.
Frank Hadden, Edinburgh Rugby, will be head-coach. He will be assisted by Glasgow Rugby's head-coach Hugh Campbell and The Borders' George Graham, who will drill the forwards. The Borders' head-coach Steve Bates and Glasgow Rugby's Sean Lineen will run the rule over the backs. The Borders' Alan Tait will be defence coach.
Hadden, Campbell and Bates will lead the selection process for the matches, against The Barbarians at Pittodrie, Aberdeen on Tuesday 24 May (kick-off 7.30pm) and the Test against Romania at the Dinamo stadium, Bucharest on Sunday 5 June (kick-off 5pm local time).
Announcing the interim national coaching team Scottish Rugby's acting chief executive Fred McLeod said: "All the coaches from our three professional teams will be working together to put their vast rugby knowledge and insight of the Scottish psyche into delivering performances for Scotland of which the nation can be proud.
"We have chosen Frank as interim head coach because of his experience in the professional game and the fact that, over the piece, he is our most successful pro-team head coach.
"Hugh Campbell's track record at club, pro-team and international level both with Scotland A and Scotland as a forward technician is exemplary and Steve Bates has impressed with his ability to get the best out of his players in a difficult first year at The Borders.
"George and Alan have made the successful transition from distinguished international rugby players to coaches who are making a difference in the professional arena, while Sean has proved his utter commitment to Scottish Rugby firstly as a Grand Slam player with Boroughmuir and Scotland then an innovative coach with Boroughmuir and now Glasgow Rugby.
"Neither Steve nor Sean are available at the time of the matches as they both have pre-arranged holiday commitments but we felt it was important for them to be involved."
Hadden, 50, who has coached at Merchiston Castle School, Dundee HSFP, Caledonia Reds and as head coach at Edinburgh Rugby since 2000, said; "I'm incredibly proud and honoured to be given this opportunity for an interim period.
"Working alongside my colleagues from the professional teams I will be doing everything I can to help the players achieve a couple of wins for Scotland and to excite and enthuse our supporters during this period.
"Our game against The Barbarians is just over three weeks away and in that time-frame, as coaches, our main focus has to be on our attacking ploys.
"Scottish Rugby has decided to put the emphasis on the three professional teams as the vehicle to drive forward professional rugby in this country and I genuinely believe that that direction could signal a very exciting period for rugby in Scotland.
"Steve Bates and his coaching team at The Borders have worked miracles on limited resources; Hugh Campbell and his coaching team at Glasgow have bridged the gap from being a side who made it difficult for the opposition, to being a genuinely threatening and attractive team who nobody in the Celtic League can possibly take lightly.
"And our philosophy at Edinburgh is to encourage the confidence of the players by the way in which we play and the way in which we train. "
"All the pro-team coaches will be involved next week as we brainstorm selection with Ian McGeechan for the forthcoming internationals.
"Then I will sit down with Hugh Campbell and Steve Bates to draw up a squad of around 30 players with whom I will work alongside George, Sean and Alan."
Hugh Campbell said: "I think it's great for the Scottish game to have all three pro-team coaching teams involved in the next two Scotland fixtures. I fully support Frank and it's so encouraging to see everyone pulling together for the good of the game."
George Graham said: "I was last involved with the national team during last year's Autumn Tests when I took some scrummaging sessions. Hugh and I will be in charge of the forwards for these two games and I'm really looking forward to it but it'll be a daunting task. Being that it's just these two games, I think the most important thing is getting the passion back into the Scottish jersey and putting a smile on the players' faces."
Steve Bates said: "I am really pleased to be helping out in any way I can by supporting Frank and his coaching team. We don't have a lot of time before the games against the Barbarians and Romania but we will hopefully put in the organisational structures to get the players out on the pitch with the belief that they can play to the best of their ability."
Sean Lineen said: "I think our priority has to be to bring the confidence back to the team and help them enjoy their rugby and what better way to do that than against a side like the Barbarians. Personally, I'm delighted to be involved, even if it is a bit earlier than I thought in my career but it's fantastic and a really exciting time. Change can be a good thing if you take it as a challenge."
Alan Tait added: "It's great to be back and involved for a couple of games. We won't be able to do a lot given the timescale and the fact that it's just a couple of games but, as I say, it's great to get back into it. It'll also be really good to see the players and to meet the new players that I've not worked with before and see what it's all about since I was last involved during the Rugby World Cup."
Biographies of the coaching team follow.
FRANK HADDEN (Edinburgh Rugby) Born 14.6.54 in Dundee. Frank Murray Hadden becomes interim Scotland head coach this weekend as his sons Scott and Andrew prepare to represent Boroughmuir in the BT Cup Final against Dundee HSFP (their father's former club). Hadden will also seek to pilot the Edinburgh Rugby team of which he has been head coach since 2000 to the semi-finals of the Celtic Cup when they face Munster this weekend. Hadden was educated at the High School of Dundee, Strathclyde University and Carnegie School of PE in Leeds. He taught PE at Guiseley School, West Yorkshire and was head of PE and Director of Rugby at Merchiston Castle School in Edinburgh from 1983-2000 (turning Merchiston into Scotland's top rugby school). He also took a sabbatical and taught and coached at the renowned Southport School in Queensland's Gold Coast. He has coached club rugby at Dundee HSFP, was assistant coach at the Caledonia Reds from 1997-98 and during his time at Edinburgh Rugby, piloted the team to the quarter-finals of the Heineken Cup last season - the first Scottish team to reach that stage of Northern Hemisphere rugby's premier club competition.
HUGH CAMPBELL - Born 10.4.52 in Airdrie. Hugh Campbell follows in the line of graduates from Jordanhill College in Glasgow who have gone on to coach at national level. A prop at Jordanhill, he represented Glasgow and won two caps for Scotland B. In his coaching career, he has been attached to Watsonians, Edinburgh Academicals, GHK and Glasgow District. He has coached Scotland U18, Scotland B and Scotland A. He was forwards coach on the Scotland development tour to Zimbabwe in 1995 and the Scotland XV tour to southern Africa in 1997. He fulfilled that same role during the 1998 summer tour of Fiji and Australia and the 2000 tour of New Zealand. A former head of PE at Inveralmond High School in Livingston, he is the SRU development officer for universities and piloted Scotland to third place in the Students' World Cup. He stood down from the Scotland coaching team after the 2003 Six Nations Championship to take on the post as head-coach of Glasgow Rugby.
STEVE BATES (The Borders) Born 4.3.63 in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales. Steve Michael Bates moved from his birth place in Wales to St Albans in Hertfordshire, England where he attended school. He studied physical education and biology at Borough Road College, London before taking up teaching as a profession. He played scrum-half for London Wasps during his teaching career and was a member of the England squad between 1989 and 1994. He won a full England cap at scrum-half in 1989 in the record win (biggest winning points margin at the time) over Romania, beating them 58-3 in Bucharest. Bates moved to Newcastle Falcons in April 1996 to fill the head-coach role and stayed with the club until March 2003. He then took a year away from rugby before taking over from Tony Gilbert as head-coach of The Borders in May 2004.
GEORGE GRAHAM (The Borders) Born 19.1.66 in Stirling. George Graham scored his first try for Scotland when he was introduced as a substitute against Ireland in the 2000 Six Nations Championship. Unfortunately he dislocated his shoulder as he scored his try and missed the rest of the season through injury. He played his early rugby with Stirling County and won national under-21 honours before making his Scotland B debut in the win over Italy in 1987. He also played representative rugby for Glasgow, but he then turned to rugby league, playing for Carlisle and Scotland. After his return to Rugby Union with Newcastle Falcons he made his Scotland A debut in the 56-11 victory over Emerging Wales in 1997. He played seven times for Scotland A. He won his first full cap as a replacement against Australia at Murrayfield in 1997. Seventeen of his 25 caps were as a replacement. His first appearance in the starting line-up was in the victory over Ireland at Lansdowne Road in 1998, and he was first-choice tight-head prop for three of Scotland's five matches in the 1999 World Cup. He was among the first batch of signings for Scotland's newest professional team, The Borders, when he joined Newcastle Falcons team-mates Gary Armstrong and Doddie Weir in returning to play their rugby in Scotland. Graham joined the Scotland management team as an assistant coach specialising in front row play in December 2003 and has been part of the Borders coaching team since that year.
International record: 25 caps. 1997 - A (rep) SA (rep) 1998 - I F (rep) W (rep). 1999 - F (rep) Arg (rep) R WC (SA U Sam NZ (rep)). 2000 - I(rep) USA A Sam. 2001 - I (rep) T (rep) Arg (rep) NZ (rep). 2002 - E (rep) It (rep) I (rep) F (rep) W (rep). Points: 5 - 1 try.
ALAN TAIT (The Borders) Born 2.7.64 in Kelso. Born 2.7.64 in Kelso. Alan Tait scored 17 tries for Scotland in a 27 cap Test career which stretched from 1987 through until the Rugby World Cup of 1999. After the 1988 season he switched to rugby league during which he made 16 appearances for Great Britain, before returning to the union game in 1996-97. A British Lion in South Africa in 1997, Tait was Scotland's technical coach on the 2000 summer tour to New Zealand and remained with the squad as assistant coach specialising in defence until the 2003 Rugby World Cup. Tait assisted the Scotland under-19 team as a defence coach in 2004 and has been assistant coach at The Borders this season.
International record: 27 caps. 1987 WC (F (rep) Z R NZ). 1988 - I F W E. 1997 - I F A. 1998 - It I F W E SA. 1999 - W (rep) E It I F Arg R WC (SA U NZ). Points: 81 - 17 tries.
SEAN LINEEN (Glasgow Rugby) Born 25/12/61 in Auckland, New Zealand. Like most New Zealanders Sean started playing rugby as a bare-foot four-year-old and went on to play competitive rugby in the Auckland area. In the 1985/6 season he made his first journey to the UK, playing in Pontypool. The original Kilted Kiwi came to Scotland in October 1988 to play for Boroughmuir. He made his International debut on 21 January 1989 against Wales at Murrayfield aged 27 and went on to win 29 caps and was part of the victorious 1990 Grand Slam team before his final appearance for Scotland against Australia in June 1992. Following his international career Sean divided his time between coaching Boroughmuir - during which he was involved in both cup and league triumphs - and running the Scottish Rugby magazine. Sean was appointed assistant coach at Glasgow Rugby in April 2003 and has quickly brought his imprint to bear on the team's imaginative back play.
International record: 29 caps. 1989 - W E I F Fj R. 1990 - I F W E NZ1 NZ2 Arg. 1991 - F W E I R WC (J Z I E NZ). 1992 - E I F W A1 A2. Points: 8 - 2 tries