Social media reacts to Warren Gatland announcement
Warren Gatland has reprised his role as British & Irish Lions head coach for the third successive Tour ahead of the trip to South Africa in 2021.
The World Cup in Japan will be Gatland’s final stand as Wales head coach as he brings the curtain down on his 11-year stint in charge of the reigning Six Nations champions.
The 55-year-old will assume his new role in August next year and will be looking to build on his previous 2013 winning Tour of Australia and the tied series in New Zealand back in 2017.
As a four-time Six Nations winning coach Gatland has earned his rightful place as one of the greatest coaches in the history of the sport and news of his re-appointment was met with celebration far and wide in the world of rugby.
Warren Gatland has been named The British & Irish Lions Head Coach for the 2021 Tour to South Africa pic.twitter.com/T6ascoiDMA
— British&Irish Lions (@lionsofficial) 12 June 2019
Here’s how social media responded to the news:
British & Irish Lions chairman Jason Leonard was delighted by the announcement…
I would like to add that there could be no better person for the job and I am very much looking forward to working closely with Warren on the 2021 Tour to South Africa https://t.co/4JyR6QlcBN
— Jason Leonard (@JasonLeonard114) 12 June 2019
As was USA 7s coach Mike Friday…
Quality choice 👌🏻….and what an opportunity and I back Gats to do this and be an undefeated Lions Head Coach against all 3 S/H nations in Test Series….Not sure if it’s been done before 🤷🏻♂️…but what an epic achievement it would be🙏🏻 #GatsFactor https://t.co/LsawvI8WLn
— Mike Friday (@MikeFriday09) 12 June 2019
Former England hooker Phil Greening shared a message of approval from his Twitter account…
No better man for the job! Great to see my old boss appointed. The SA tour is going to be immense! Can’t wait to head down and be part of it. https://t.co/dYnfrWye0a
— Phil Greening (@PhilGreening) 12 June 2019
Meanwhile 2001 and 2005 tourist Jason Robinson was equally thrilled…
— Jason Robinson OBE (@Jason15Robinson) 12 June 2019
Wales RFU shared an inspirational video in celebration of their head coaches’ achievement…
The sea of red is coming, and Warren Gatland is at the helm once again 🦁🇿🇦 pic.twitter.com/ZYVA1H1mcA
— Welsh Rugby Union 🏉 (@WelshRugbyUnion) 12 June 2019
And so too did England Rugby…
🦁 “I’m hugely honoured and delighted to lead the Lions again.”@lionsofficial confirm Warren Gatland as head coach for 2021 tour.
— England Rugby (@EnglandRugby) 12 June 2019
WARREN GATLAND FACTFILE
- Connacht (1996-98)
- Ireland (1998-2001: 38 Tests)
- Wasps (2002-05: 3x Premiership titles, 1x Heineken Cup)
- Waikato (2005-07: 1x Air New Zealand Cup)
- Wales (2007-19: 4x Six Nations titles, 3x Grand Slams, Rugby World Cup semi-final and quarter-final, 114 Tests to date)
- British & Irish Lions: 2009, 2013, 2017
– 2009 – Assistant coach (forwards)
– 2013 and 2017 – Head coach
– Gatland is the longest-serving international rugby coach in the world.
– He also holds the record for the most Test matches overseen (158 to date).
– Gatland is the only coach to have won three Grand Slam titles.
– He has led two British & Irish Lions tours as head coach, and was unbeaten in Test series’ against Australia (2-1) and New Zealand (1-1-1).
– Gatland’s Wales side are currently on a record-breaking 14-match unbeaten run – the longest of any Wales team in history.