Rugby Union – Easter calls time to coach

Harlequins and England back-row forward Nick Easter has been backed to make a success of his first coaching role after calling time on his playing career. The 37-year-old, who won 54 caps for his country, has decided that he would be unable to give his full attention to a dual role with Quins and has opted to focus fully on his new job as defensive coach with the Aviva Premiership club. His choice won the full backing of new director of rugby John Kingston, who expects Easter to make a massive impact from his new position on the sidelines. He told the club's official website: "Nick has a fantastic rugby brain and it is for this reason I offered him the opportunity to join the new-look coaching team at the club. "While a Quins team without Nick at the helm may seem strange at first, his influence on the group will, if anything, be even greater in his new role." Quins are 9/2 to triumph in the European Challenge Cup next season, having lost 26-19 to Montpellier in the final last term.

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