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Rob Hunter joins RFU National Academy coaching team

09 October 2009

  • Hunter joins RFU coaching team as academy forwards coach
  • Former Northampton forward and academy manager to work with Under 20 side

New England Under 20s forward coach Rob Hunter

Photo: Getty Images

Rob Hunter has been appointed to the RFU's National Academy coaching team as forwards coach for the England Under 20 side.

The 37-year-old will join the RFU on December 1 from Northampton Saints, where he is Academy Manager and head coach of the Wanderers side.

He will work alongside Under 20 head coach Mark Mapletoft in the build-up to the RBS Under 20 Six Nations and next summer's IRB Junior World Championship in Argentina.

Hunter said: "I'm tremendously excited by the opportunity. England's recent record at Under 20 level and the quality of the lads coming out of the academy system shows we have a real depth of talent. I am looking forward to adding to their development as players and working alongside the management team.

Hunter, who represented the Army, Combined Services, London Scottish, Northampton Saints and Scotland A, feels the achievements of young players is his lasting legacy at Franklin’s Gardens.

He said: “I've had a great time at Northampton and the highlights include winning the Guinness A League last season, seeing lads like Dylan Hartley come through to be capped by England and captain the Saints' first team, and the development of Courtney Lawes, who's a local lad with the potential to go all the way.”

The RFU's Head of Elite Player Development Stuart Lancaster said: “Rob's a great addition to the Under 20 management team.

“He brings a wealth of experience of age group rugby and working in an elite environment and we're looking foward to seeing him continue the development of players within the Under 20 and National Academy programme.”

The RFU's Head of Elite Coach Development Kevin Bowring added: “We believe he's the right person to contribute to the further development of the Under 20 side and I am sure he will help the team to achieve its ambition of winning the Junior World Championship.

“He's already played a part in developing some of the country's leading young players and made an impact coaching teams at Northampton and it's good to see him make the progression from an Academy Manager into his National Academy Coach role.”