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Mike Catt likely as 'temporary' England assistant

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James Mortimer     30 Apr 2012     Getty Images

Stuart Lancaster was appointed as a 'caretaker' during the Six Nations, but a second placed finish led to the Cumberland born coach being appointed full time.

The new England coach was in South Africa recently, whre he met up with Smith, and tabled some options for the highly regarded New Zealand coach to join the Rugby Football Union.

Smith recently said he would decide his future within 10 days.

For now, it seems that Mike Catt will be appointed as back's coach for England, preparing the Red Rose for a tough three-test tour of South Africa.

The 40-year-old, currently coaching London Irish, will wrap up his club duties next week, and then link up with Lancaster.

Catt will replace Andy Farrell, who declined an England invitation to join up with the test side, although while the Saracens mentor was responsible for defence - it is believed that the 75-test cap Catt will be recognised as attack coach.

English media is reporting that the appointment will only be for two months, leaving the door open for Smith to join up with England for their four-test autumn international series.

Fiji, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand will be the visitors to Twickenham at the end of 2012, with the All Blacks playing England on December 1.