Stuart Lanacster plans to use the Lions blueprint to conquer South Africa in June.
new head coach will take a 40-player squad for the five-game tour that
includes Tests in Durban, Johannesburg and Port Elizabeth.
And just as he did during the Six Nations, Lancaster will pack the squad with young bloods who he believes to be on the verge of Test quality.
said: “The dynamics of preparing a Test team during the week and having
a game in the evening in midweek is a challenge. I don’t see it as two separate tour parties, however. It will be very much the Lions way.
“I’ve spoken to Lions great Sir Ian McGeechan about it, and the success he had with that model.
“It’s a great opportunity to take players and see how they cope – because even the midweek games will be hugely competitive.
“We have a lot of lads on the cusp of international rugby who’ve never had the chance to show their wares.
“The likes of Jordan Turner-Hall, Henry Trinder, Freddie Burns and George Ford could get that midweek opportunity.
“After the last World Cup we had an age profile of either under-25 or over-32, but nothing in between.
can’t comment on why that happened, but I don’t want to end up in a situation where we have to start the process over again.
started this process in the Six Nations, and this way we should have the longevity of introducing players who can help us reach the top and stay there.” But Lancaster admits he needs to resolve his coaching team soonest.
Rowntree will continue coaching the forwards, but it will still require
negotiation by the RFU to buy out the two remaining years on Saracens head coach Andy Farrell’s contract.
added: “I would like to be able to appoint the coaching staff as soon as possible, but things have to be done in the right way.
“We are open-minded regarding additional requirements which will be needed post-tour.”
that the decision has been made, Lancaster admits he felt the pressure of the job throughout the Six Nations more than he let on at the time. He said: “A lot of people questioned my decisions, my ability to coach and to organise the players.
“They also questioned the player selection when we were playing three Tests from five away from home.
“Yes, that was huge pressure, but I just went back to concentrating on the things that I could control.
“I’ve spent 20 years trying to get a team into the Premiership, trying to keep a side in the Premiership and coaching elsewhere.
“Now, bloody hell, I’m the England head coach – but it won’t change me.”
Lancaster added: “I’ll work hard for England and try to make us the best.”