Rugby World Cup 2011

Henson backs Henry for job

2011-10-28 12:36
Gavin Henson (Gallo)

Sydney - Gavin Henson believes Graham Henry would do nicely for England if the Rugby Football Union takes up the Rugby World Cup-winning coach's offer of help.

The controversial Welsh back is poised to relaunch his own career with Cardiff Blues at a time when the focus of attention is very much on English rugby - for all the wrong reasons. Internal strife and a pitiful World Cup campaign have prompted speculation that heads could roll as part of an overall review into the structure of the English game.

Henry revealed in yesterday's Daily Telegraph that he would be keen to listen to any approach from Twickenham. He said: "I would love to work in coach development, player development, environmental development, cultural development of a group of people. I am passionate about that."

If the former Wales coach did come back to this part of the world, Henson, 29, would be the first to tip an English rejuvenation. "He is now a World Cup-winning coach and I owe him a lot because he gave me my first cap in 2001," Henson said. "He was good for Wales - look at his record. Unfortunately, things didn't go so well after he left until Mike Ruddock came in and we won the Grand Slam.

"Having won the World Cup, Graham has shown that he is a great coach, and of course anyone would want to have him working for them. Graham and Mike Ruddock certainly did a great deal for me as a player and I will always be grateful for that."

Henson himself still harbours international ambitions as he starts another comeback to the club game, having signed a short-term deal with Cardiff Blues.

Henson, capped 33 times, blames a lack of desire and a string of injuries for his fall from grace. However, he said: "I'm certainly not finished with Wales. I need to get back playing for the Blues and, after a difficult couple of years, I'm ready for that.

"So, if I do well for the region, who knows what might happen. I would like to think that I could get back into the squad sooner rather than later."

A wrist injury against England in August that cost Henson any chance of playing at the World Cup has yet to heal fully and a Blues debut is four or five weeks away.

However, that is not stopping him aiming even higher. "I would love to play for the Lions in two years' time and that's an aim for me. I also want to play at a World Cup because I was left out in 2003 and 2007. Having said that, I don't feel I was deserving of a place in this World Cup squad. I don't believe it would have been right for me to have snuck in."


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