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Gatland joins Erinle chorus
31 March 2005 10:24am
Wasps director of rugby Warren Gatland has echoed his coach Shaun Edwards' assessment of Ayoola Erinle, calling the centre 'the best impact player I have ever seen.'
Earlier this week, Wasps coach Shaun Edwards backed the powerhouse midfield star to make an impact on the international stage, and Gatland is of the same opinion.
"I keep saying I think he's the best impact player I have ever seen," said Gatland.
"I have never seen anything like him. He is 110kg, 6ft 4in, has got good footwork and is quick - he is the ideal player you would want in your squad."
There were more than a few eyebrows raised in 1997 when the then uncapped Will Greenwood was selected to tour South Africa with the Lions.
Greenwood had only featured for Leicester and England 'A' before coaches Fran Cotton and Ian McGeechan came knocking on his door.
However, he went on to play a part in a history-making tour, which saw the tourists came away with a 2-1 Test series win.
The centre then became a permanent feature in the England set-up, picking up 55 caps in the process.
It is possible Erinle could follow suit but, while the 25-year-old remains in the international wilderness, Gatland is content.
The Kiwi coach added: "As long as he doesn't get picked for England and the Lions, he'll continue to be available for us so it's not a bad thing.
"He's pretty special."
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