Mitchell handed England Rugby new defence coach role

England Rugby Union have turned to New Zealander John Mitchell as the man to be their new defence coach leading up to the 2019 World Cup.

The 54-year-old former back-row forward previously worked with the Red Rose between 1997 and 2000, while Clive Woodward was head coach.

Defence is a key pillar of our game and John is an experienced coach.

Eddie Jones

Mitchell handed England Rugby new defence coach roleMitchell also has head coaching experience from his time in charge of the Sale Sharks, a host of Super Rugby franchises and the national teams of both his homeland and the United States.

He has been brought in to replace Paul Gustard, who has moved on to become head coach at Saracens, while England have also confirmed that Scott Wisemantel will continue as attack coach for the immediate future.

England head coach Eddie Jones said of Mitchell: “Defence is a key pillar of our game and John is an experienced coach.

“He has coached the All Blacks, USA Rugby and a number of Super Rugby sides, so he will bring a wealth of experience and add to the coaching mix we have here.”

Meanwhile, Mitchell himself added: “This is an exciting opportunity to work with England Rugby and support Eddie Jones as head coach.

“I will be joining an elite high-performance programme, Test team and coaching group where I will use all my experience and focus to bring the necessary clarity and confidence to the players from a defensive perspective.”

England can be backed at 13/2 to win the 2019 World Cup in Japan, with Ireland priced at 9/2 and Wales available at 18/1.

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