Sat, Apr 04, 2009 - Page 18 News List

Scotland's Hadden quits over disappointing run

AFP , EDINBURGH

Frank Hadden stepped down as coach of the Scotland national Rugby Union team with immediate effect on Thursday following another disappointing Six Nations.

Scotland finished fifth in this season? championship and for the second season in a row won just one of their five matches, against fellow strugglers Italy.

Scottish Rugby chief executive Gordon McKie said: ?ollowing a presentation at today? Scottish Rugby Board, covering a review of the Scotland performance in the Six Nations Championship, it was agreed with Frank Hadden that a change in head coach is required to allow us to plan fully for the 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand.?br />

?n behalf of the Board, I have thanked Frank for his hard work and commitment during his term as national coach,?McKie added.

The statement added that the recruitment process for a new head coach would begin with immediate effect, but also held out the possibility that former Edinburgh boss Hadden might still be involved in the Scotland set-up in some other capacity.

?iscussions are ongoing with Frank Hadden in relation to his future with Scottish Rugby,?the statement said.

Hadden? exit came as little surprise following another poor Scotland campaign in the Six Nations.

For the third straight season Scotland failed to achieve their own minimum target of two wins in the Championship. They have now finished in the bottom two five times in the last six years, the same record as perennial makeweights Italy.

Former Scotland flanker Finlay Calder, speaking at an HSBC Lions Legends event on Thursday, said he sympathised with Hadden.

? am sorry to hear the news but its understandable as he has found himself under enormous pressure,?said Calder, who captained the British and Irish Lions on their victorious tour of 耍ustralia in 1989.

?e has come under sometimes unwarranted criticism and I feel for him. I hope he has come to this decision himself and wish him luck,?Calder said.

Looking ahead, Calder said ex-England coach Andy Robinson, now with Edinburgh, might succeed Hadden.

?t is very hard to know who might replace him as there is not exactly a queue of people lining up. I very much hope that Andy Robinson and Sean Lineen [Glasgow] might consider the position, as they are both doing well with their professional teams,?Calder said.

? am disappointed for Frank and feel it is not a good day for Scottish rugby,?Calder added.

Hadden? final game in charge, last month? 26-12 Calcutta Cup loss to England at Twickenham, was Scotland? 12th defeat in their last 16 matches.

Afterwards, he caused a stir by saying Scotland? current players could win the Six Nations if only they had sufficient preparation time.

? honestly believe that we can win the championship with this squad,?he said. ?ut I am frustrated we don? get the preparation time we want.

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