Geech is best for the Lions

Former England and Lions coach Andy Robinson has backed Ian McGeechan to lead the British and Irish Lions for their 2009 tour to South Africa.

The Lions committee are not expected to announce a coach until after next year’s Six Nations but names are being mentioned. – Some of the names going round are Eddie O’Sullivan, Eddie Jones and Jake White have been linked to the post.

In 1989 Ian McGeechan masterminded the success over Australia and then repeated it eight years later in South Africa.

McGeechan also headed up the 1993 Lions that only just lost out to New Zealand, while he was asked to coach the midweek side by Sir Clive Woodward in 2005. The midweek team at times was impressive.

Robinson, who was one of Woodward’s coaches in the tour to New Zealand two years ago, insists McGeechan has the pedigree to topple the World Cup-winning Boks.

Robinson, now in charge at Edinburgh, told the Daily Telegraph:  “I think he’s a quality coach. “I played under him in 1989 and we were both involved in 2005 on the New Zealand tour.

His depth of knowledge and understanding of the game, in all its facets – attack, defence, set-piece – is just phenomenal.

“The quality of any coach is that when he talks the players listen and the players respond, and I think that’s an important part of what he’s about.

“He won in South Africa in 1997, so I think he would be an outstanding choice.”

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