Kidney is focused on preparation for the Six Nations at the moment. ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Kidney up against Gatland and Robinson for Lions job

The Ireland coach will go head-to-head with his opposite numbers at Wales and Scotland for the chance to lead the 2013 tour in Australia.

DECLAN KIDNEY’S PERFORMANCE in the upcoming Six Nations will come under extra scrutiny as the British and Irish Lions search for a coach to take charge of the 2013 tour.

Ireland begin the tournament at home to Wales next month, where Kidney faces Warren Gatland – another in the fray for the coveted position.

Scotland coach Andy Robinson is believed to be the third front-runner and the appointment is expected to be made in April.

“You don’t have to be a genius to work out who the candidates are so from that perspective we will keep an eye on them and see how well they do,” Lions chief executive John Feehan said in The Guardian.

All of those people are committed to wanting to do it, which is fantastic. It really comes down to performance now and who we feel will work best.”

The Lions travel to Australia in 17 months’ time in search of their first series victory since 1997 and will play three Test matches in Brisbane (22 June), Melbourne (29 June) and Sydney (6 July).

The candidate who proves successful will not be involved in their country’s Six Nations that year, while 2009 coach Ian McGeechan could also be considered if none of the three are seen as suitable.

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