7 Oct 2020

Fiji's Vern Cotter to coach Barbarians rugby team

6:48 am on 7 October 2020

Flying Fijians rugby coach Vern Cotter will take charge of the Barbarians team against England later this month.

The former Scotland head coach will be joined by one his Fiji assistant coaches, former test referee Glen Jackson, for the Quilter Cup clash at Twickenham on 25 October.

"I'm hugely excited and honoured to be taking the reins for the Barbarians' match against England later this month," said Cotter.

"It is a big moment in a rugby career to be involved with this famous club. It's going to be a different experience given the global situation, but it's important to get international rugby back on track and significant we are able to come together for this fixture."

Fiji celebrate beating the Barbarians.

The Barbarians were beaten by Fiji in November last year. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

The fixture was originally scheduled for June before being postponed because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The game will be played behind closed doors at Twickenham Stadium and will be the first international match at the famous ground since the suspension of the Six Nations in March.

Vern Cotter was appointed Fiji head coach in January and will take charge of the team for the first time on 15 November against France in the opening round of the Autumn Nations Cup.

Former Chiefs and Saracens first five Glen Jackson spent nine years as a professional referee.

Former test referee Glen Jackson will assist Vern Cotter with the Barbarians and Flying Fijians. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

The New Zealander is poised to announce his first Flying Fijians squad this week. The team are due to assemble in France on the final weekend of this month but Cotter and Jackson will now head to the Northern Hemisphere early to fulfil their Barbarians commitments.

"I'm also very pleased to bring Glen into the coaching team and I know the players will enjoying working with him and having him on their side," joked the 58 year old Cotter.

"It will be special to be back at Twickenham facing England and even without having fans there, I'm looking forward to the team running out for the Quilter Cup. It's another important moment in the return international rugby."

The Barbarians have recent history with the Flying Fijians, having been beaten 33-31 by the Melanesian side in November last year.