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Scotland will welcome a new coach this June. He is Gregor Townsend, a former Scottish national player and coach of the Glasgow Warriors. He replaces New Zealand's Vern Cotter, who will move to Montpelier in the French Top 14.
Cotter's three-year contract was due to end, and the Scotland RFU desperately wanted to appoint a Scotsman to the head-coaching role. Townsend was the only home grown candidate, and, fearing his moving to another Six Nations country, resulted in the end of the popular Cotter's tenure.
Under Cotter, Scotland went 19-17, their most notable game a 2015 Rugby World Club loss to Australia 35-34 in the quarter final round on a disputed penalty. Cotter had a 2-8 record against Home Country rivals England, Ireland, and Wales, and 3-11 including France in the mix. Overall, he was 12-5 against international competition outside the Six Nations' squads, defeating Argentina three times.
Known as "Stern Vern" or the man with "eyes of ice," Cotter is credited with changing the culture of Scottish rugby, which had suffered for years.
Cotter gained recognition leading Clermont Auvergne to a European 2007 Heineken Cup victory, and establishing the club as a leading rugby team in the competitive French league.
Townsend begins his task this summer of restoring Scotland to their former rugby greatness. Meanwhile in Montpelier, Cotter resumes his French association, this time knowing he is waiting in the wings to fill the position of head coach of another leading rugby nation.