Rugby: Armstrong slams SRU for looking abroad in search of national coaches

Former Scotland rugby captain Gary Armstrong has joined criticism of another overseas appointment to the current national coaching set-up.

With the SRU set to announce that Queensland Reds’ Matt Taylor will succeed Graham Steadman as defence coach Armstrong said today: “There seems to be this idea that if you come from Australia or New Zealand you’re automatically better than if you come from Scotland but that hasn’t been borne out by results in recent seasons. There are good Scots at Gloucester (Bryan Redpath and Carl Hogg) while you have the likes of Craig Chalmers (Melrose) and Kenny Murray (Ayr) but the message seems to be that you have more chance of getting a job at Murrayfield if you are not actually from Scotland.”

Referring to head coach Andy Robinson the ex-scrum half said: “I think Andy has done a fine job so far, he has the nucleus of a good side and I am reasonably confident about our chances in the last two matches.

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“But we have to get the balance right and in terms of what is happening in coaching we seem to be moving towards a situation where Scots are squeezed out of the picture which can’t be healthy for the long term development of the game.”

Ian Rankin coached Scots-qualified Taylor at Edinburgh and says: “It is another slap in the face for ambitious young coaches working in Scotland for him to come here.”