Stuart Lancaster will take charge of Churchill Cup holders England Saxons this season.
Lancaster, who coached Leeds Carnegie in the Premiership last term, is now employed as the Rugby Football Union’s head of elite player development.
He takes over the Saxons role from Newcastle rugby director Steve Bates, who stood down from international commitments earlier this summer after landing the top job with the Falcons.
Lancaster, 38, said: “This is a great opportunity to coach at international level.
“As well as developing my coaching skills, it is an exciting opportunity to gain first-hand knowledge on the best young players coming through the system.
A 32-man Saxons squad containing the likes of Mike Tindall, David Strettle, Ben Kay and Joe Worsley will join Martin Johnson’s elite senior England group for a training camp next week.
Lancaster added: “Training alongside the senior team will help create a consistency of playing style between the teams, and give the players the best possible opportunity to step up to the highest level.”
The Saxons will play two Six Nations games in 2009, before returning to North America next summer to defend the Churchill Cup.
In addition to his Saxons role, Lancaster also has overall management responsibility for the England sevens, Under-18 and Under-20 sides.