Former England coach Damian McGrath has been unveiled as part of Bury St Edmunds Rugby Club’s new coaching team.
The Harberden-based club have expanded their coaching set-up from two to five ahead of their first season in rugby’s fourth tier, in National League Two South.
And McGrath, who is a former Rugby League professional who has spent the last two years as an assistant coach at England Sevens and also helped our the fifteen-a-side team under Clive Woodward, will foucs on defence and skills.
Speaking about the move, which will see him fulfil a part-time role commuting from Leeds, he said: “I have known Terry (Sands, Bury performance director) for a long time and I have been down here for the last three or four years to do one-off sessions.
“I had an illness last year while working with England Sevens which meant I had to step down.
“That is all sorted out now but I was at a loose end while I was looking for other things.
“Terry said, listen, these are the changes we have made at the club and we are going to go on to the next level and would love you to be a part of it, and I jumped at the opportunity.”
Gavin Hogg will still oversea matchdays as director of rugby with Bury now having coaches responsible for: scrum and lineout, defence and skills, breakdown and contact and attach and kicking.
McGrath was also head coach of Great Britain Sevens who were crowned world champions at the World Student Games in Brazil last year and was head of rugby for North Wales RGC between 2012-13, establishing regional rugby in North Wales.
In rugby league, he was a skills coach for England as they were crowned Hong Kong Sevens champions, having also been head of performance at Huddersfield Giants and started out as Leeds Rhinos academy coach, having finished his playing career at Batley by taking on the head coach position.
Justin Loveridge, who works for Leicester Tigers as a development officer across Norfolk and was a former coach at Wymondham, has also joined the club as attack and kicking coach.