sport news England can wait for Exeter's Big Chief! Rob Baxter has his sights set on an ...

For a decade now Rob Baxter has been Exeter's undisputed Big Chief. As he showers his club with gold, collecting the most coveted prizes on offer, the question quickly becomes: what is next?

If Exeter beat Wasps on Saturday and add a second Premiership to a first European Cup won last week, would Baxter's task of turning also-rans to the continent's top club be complete?

And then would he look to test himself at the highest level with England?  

Richard Baxter and Rob Baxter (right) in action together for Exeter back in 2003

Richard Baxter and Rob Baxter (right) in action together for Exeter back in 2003

BAXTER BOYS

JOHN BAXTER 

Age: 76 Position: Lock 

Played for Exeter in the 1960s, helped recruit financier and now-chairman Tony Rowe in 1992, before becoming chairman and director.

ROB BAXTER 

Age: 49 Position: Lock

Played at Exeter between 1987 and 2005, and was captain for a decade before becoming a coach. Made head coach in 2009 and won Chiefs promotion to the Premiership in 2010, their first title in 2017 and first European Cup last weekend.

RICHIE BAXTER 

Age: 42 Position: No 8

Made senior debut in Division 2 in 1997 before retiring in 2013 a Premiership player. Holds the record of Chiefs appearances with 431.

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'Right here and now, no,' comes the definitive reply from the man himself.

Why?

'Because I'm happy here,' the 49-year-old adds.

And in three years' time, when Eddie Jones has left?

'Well, it would depend if I'm happy here,' Baxter offers with a grin.

Question answered, for now.

This is not a matter of desire, though - far from it, according to his family.

'I look at the ambition he has shown with Exeter,' says his younger brother Richie, 42, who played a record 431 times at No 8 for the Chiefs.

'And you think quite possibly that ambition would be there to go further on with England, if asked.

'What he has achieved at Exeter, you need to be an ambitious person to do those kind of things.' The Baxter family is the golden thread through Exeter's journey.

Between Richie, Rob and their father John, now 76, the Baxters have played more than 1,000 games for the club stretching back 50 years - not counting the hundreds Rob has coached since taking charge in 2009.

Normally Exeter matches are a family reunion. Father John and mother Roberta, 73, come with Richie and his family, Rob's wife Jo and their children.

But this time the celebrations after the European Cup win took place in Covid-safe pockets down on the 300-acre farm outside Exeter where all three families still live.

Richard Baxter (left) and Rob Baxter celebrate promotion to the Premiership in 2010

Richard Baxter (left) and Rob Baxter celebrate promotion to the Premiership in 2010

A 'chinwag' outside was all Rob could manage with his parents - who still work the farm themselves - although he did enjoy a few drinks with Jo.

'We had a bit of a giggle, did a few silly things as you do,' smiles Rob.

'We managed to sing along to a few songs that we probably shouldn't have sung along to. I can't say what ones! It's too embarrassing.' Richie, who has heard his brother sing plenty of them first-hand chimes in: 'He loves the karaoke!' So did the younger sibling toast his brother with champagne?

'Well, you'll know it was a glass of cider!' Richie quickly corrects.

'I did have a couple to celebrate the win, but life has to go on. You've got to get on with things, especially on a

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