The Leicester Tigers star his son wants him to select for England

New England head coach Steve Borthwick has revealed the conversation he had with his children after he told them he would be leaving Leicester Tigers.New England men’s head coach Steve Borthwick , during a press conference at Twickenham Stadium, London. Borthwick was recruited from Leicester, where he has acted as director of rugby since 2020, steering the club to Gallagher Premiership title victory last season Credit: Alamy

New England head coach Steve Borthwick has revealed the conversation he had with his children after telling them he would be leaving Leicester Tigers.

Borthwick has signed a five-year contract with the RFU to succeed Eddie Jones, leaving Leicester immediately as he focuses on the Six Nations and next year’s Rugby World Cup.

Selection tips

Speaking to the BBC’s Rugby Union Weekly podcast shortly after being unveiled as England head coach, Borthwick spoke about the conversation he had with his children about the job change .

They’re Tigers fans, obviously, and while they were fine with his dad taking on a new role, his eldest, Hunter, had some advice for the selection.

“They definitely have their favorite players,” Borthwick said with a smile.

“I spoke to them, sat them down and said, ‘Boys, maybe I’m going to make a change. Maybe I’m going to go from coaching Leicester Tigers to coaching England. I’ said how you would feel about that?

“I sat down with them, and they looked at me, and Hunter was like, ‘Dad, it’s okay. But you have to pick a lot of players from Leicester Tiger.

Borthwick responded by asking who would be first?

“Can you bring in Tommy Refell from Wales? Hunter asked.

Borthwick laughed before adding, “I told Tommy too. But it’s a reminder… I have the privilege of being England’s head coach.

“Privilege to coach the team as an assistant coach, privilege to be captain of the team, to play for the team. You have conversations like that, and it reminds you how much people in this countries love this team.

Wigglesworth grateful to Borthwick and Sinfield

Back at Leicester, interim head coach Richard Wigglesworth sang the praises of his former coaches.

The former England scrum-half ended his playing career this week to take over as caretaker Tigers head coach after a career that saw him score a record 322 Premiership games and win 33 selections in England.

Speaking on the decision to retire and the impact Borthwick and Sinfield had on him, Wigglesworth said: “My family gave it their all too, and I, literally, couldn’t have achieved what I ‘ve without them.

“I wouldn’t have taken on the role of head coach of Leicester Tigers if I didn’t believe there was a group of players and managers determined to succeed and, with those at this club, that can’t be challenged.

“I am grateful to Steve and Kev for what they taught me, how they challenged me and the friendship I have with them. Myself and Leicester Tigers are better for working with them .

READ MORE: Head coach Steve Borthwick puts aside Rugby World Cup talks

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