Gary Street: World Cup winner enjoying Basildon 'challenge'

Gary Street
Gary Street led England Women to lift their first World Cup since 1994

World Cup-winning former England Women's coach Gary Street says he is enjoying life in week-to-week rugby with seventh-tier men's side Basildon.

Street left the England job in January after the World Cup win last year.

"I worked 14 years at the RFU and had all the access to lots of elite players and everything being in a perfect world," he told BBC Essex.

"I thought it would be nice to stretch my coaching, go back to where I started and go into a good old-fashioned club."

Street began his coaching career in local junior rugby in Birmingham and, after a spell as a coach at the University of Birmingham, was named coach of the England team in 2007.

He was in charge when his side beat Canada 21-9 in the World Cup final in Paris last August, before leaving by mutual consent earlier this year.

Street took over at the south Essex club, who play in London Two North East, in July and is preparing for their first league game against South Woodham Ferrers on 19 September.

England Women
England's sole previous World Cup triumph came in 1994

Despite all the perks of working within an international set-up, Street says that he gets real enjoyment out of seeing less-developed players make large strides.

"As a coach it's about making players better, whoever they are," he said.

"When you get to the World Cup, you're making slight tweaks, whereas my real passion is developing players and making big leaps with them.

"The thing you miss when you're an England coach when you've got 10 games a year is week-in, week-out training on Tuesdays and Thursdays, game on a Saturday, get to put it right the week after.

"I thought long and hard about what I wanted to do and it gives me more time to spend with the family. I've been away for too many weekends, now it's a nice life balance."