Thursday 27 October 2016

Alex could be the King

THERE is a school of thought that Matt O'Connor paid the price for his convivial nature, that Leinster need an authoritarian figure to drive the environment.

The winning culture that has been built on the back of years of heartbreak is beginning to grow thin with those who remain.

Brian O'Driscoll and Leo Cullen finished last year; Gordon D'Arcy and Shane Jennings this year.

There must be a general feeling of responsibility among the current players that they have failed O'Connor.

The fact is Leinster, the brand, has to be carried forward by the next generation of players, who have not had to suffer the slings of 'ladyboys', the arrows of 'chokers'.

The next man in the door might have to bring 'the fear factor' and the intensity of the two men who made Leinster - Michael Cheika and Joe Schmidt.

Here is a list of four outstanding candidates.


THE former Wallaby coach now resides in Japan where he coaches the Panasonic Wild Knights.

He oversaw the Canterbury Crusaders unbeaten Super Rugby season in 2002 and coached Australia for five years until The Lions series in 2013.


THE other former Wallaby coach left his post last year in controversial, even scandalous circumstances and is not currently working as a coach.

He earned a shot at the top job by brilliantly guiding Queensland Reds to the Super Rugby title in 2011.


THE ex-Wasps and England out-half spent three seasons working with Schmidt at Clermont-Auvergne.

Since then, King has moved to Northampton Saints as their backs coach where he has extended his contract to the summer of 2016/2017.


THE Waikato Chiefs assistant coach is revered throughout the world.

He was a central figure in New Zealand's 2011 World Cup win and in The Chiefs back-to-back Super Rugby titles in 2012 and 2013.


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