Tito backs Baber and Burnell for permanent Blues job

Guinness PRO12 Editor

2 Nov 2011


Cardiff Blues captain Paul Tito is tipping interim bosses Gareth Baber and Justin Burnell to continue in their role permanently, but admits the next three games are crucial.

Since former head coach Dai Young sought pastures new with London Wasps in June, Baber and Burnell have been in temporary charge, guiding the Blues to fourth in the RaboDirect PRO12 table.

With Shaun Edwards departing his coaching role at Wasps, he has been linked with the job and while Blues chairman Peter Thomas has denied making an approach for ex-New Zealand coach Graham Henry, he has confirmed Baber’s and Burnell’s positions will be reviewed in November, with Rob Howley also believed to be in the frame.

And while Tito believes the duo have what it takes to continue their roles, he conceded the forthcoming league clash with Newport Gwent Dragons and the subsequent Heineken Cup double header will prove pivotal to Thomas’ review.

"I think it's a little bit of unknown at the moment obviously with the coaches," said the 33-year-old Kiwi lock.

"In their defence they've done a sterling job I feel. They're two men who have got [their] heads down and are doing a good job.

"You look around the place, everyone's happy and everyone's having a bit of a say.

"These big games coming up, Dragons this weekend and the Heineken Cup games, are crucial for those guys [Baber and Burnell] and the boys as well."

"Hopefully they can continue throughout the year and it's going to come down to us performing on the pitch.”