Daily Round Up – 19/05/2021 – Italy Name New Head Coach
Italy Appoint New Head Coach
Italy have named Kieran Crowley as their new head coach. The World Cup-winning All Black has been with Benetton since 2016 and now succeeds Franco Smith in charge of the Azzurri. He takes over from Smith, who will move into a new role as the head of high performance in Italy, overseeing rugby at every level. As well as serving as the head coach, Crowley will also take charge of Italy’s attack in the new coaching set-up. He will be joined by Andrea Moretti, from Zebre, who will be the forwards coach, while defence coach Marius Goosen, Corrado Pilat and Giovanni Sanguin will also work alongside Crowley.
“I’m honoured that the FIR have given me the opportunity to lead Italy to the next World Cup. In the five years with Benetton Rugby I’ve been able to learn and understand the country and it’s rugby culture, an understanding which I cannot wait to develop as head coach of the national team. We have a talented young generation who have recently had their chance at international level and in the PRO14 and have all the quality necessary to, along with the more experienced members of the squad with whom we will work, the spine of the Italy team for the next cycle.”
New Contract For Talented Crusaders Coach
Highly thought of Forwards Coach Jason Ryan has signed a new deal with the Crusaders. There is always speculation on Head Coach Scott Robertson’s future, but in some good news for the Crusaders, they have locked in one of his right hand men. Ryan has impressed and got the best out of young talent like Cullen Grace and Ethan Blackadder. His most impressive work has come through finding and improving missed talent like Prop George Bower.
In other Canterbury based news, The NPC region have signed coach Marty Bourke from New York. The former Bay Of Plenty Attack will be returning to New Zealand with the hopes of reigniting this Canterbury backline. He will have some quality players at his disposal. Even without their big name players, Canterbury have young talent like Chay Fihaki coming through and they could form a deadly attack in the coming seasons.
Cornish Pirates Sign Dragons Fly Half
Fly Half Arwel Robson has signed full terms with Championship side Cornish Pirates, after impressing in a loan spell from Welsh side Dragons. Robson has signed an initial one year deal, after scoring 28 points in his intial short term spell.
Head Coach Gavin Cattle:
”Having been exposed to Pro-14 level, when Arwel arrived on loan we expected to have a good player on our hands, which we have witnessed.
In a short time with he has shown he has the appetite to drive the team, and besides having a really good balanced kicking game also offers an attacking threat. I think he is going to serve us well.”
Wasps Sign Former Chief Mehson
Wasps are delighted to announce the signing of winger Luke Mehson, after a successful trial period at the Club.
The 21-year-old has been training with Wasps this season and has appeared on loan at Greene King IPA Championship side Nottingham Rugby.
Mehson made his Gallagher Premiership debut for Exeter Chiefs against Saracens last season, while he was at the University of Exeter.
Mehson also appeared in the Premiership Rugby 7s and in the Premiership Shield for Exeter Chiefs in 2019.
Wasps Men’s Head Coach Lee Blackett said: “We have been really impressed with Luke during his time on trial at the Club and we are delighted to have permanently signed an exciting young English player like Luke.
“We believe that he will really add to our exciting group of back three players at the club.
“We are all looking forward to working further with Luke and helping him reach his potential in a Black and Gold shirt.”
Glasgow Legend Retires
Glasgow Warriors Openside Chris Fusaro has announced his retirement at the end of this season. With 183 outings in a Glasgow jersey to his name, only Rob Harley and Ryan Wilson can lay claim to having made more appearances for the club than Fusaro, the trio having often caused havoc together for opponents from the back-row. The 31-year-old first turned out for the Warriors in February 2010, starting at openside against Cardiff Blues at Firhill.
Jack Bates Signs Extension With Bristol Bears
Talented nineteen year old Utility Back Jack Bates has signed a contract extension with Bristol Bears. It will see him continue his development in the Senior Academy, but it would not be a surprise to see him getting more first team action over those two years. Bates is an England Under 20s player and Pat Lam is always keen on bringing young, homegrown talent through to the first team.
“Jack is another Bristolian product who has come through the Academy pathway system and is showing encouraging development in the senior environment.
“We are excited about Jack’s growth and his versatility across the backline. He’s a physical character who causes problems for defenders. The key for Jack is to keep learning from the experienced guys around him and to push hard for regular first team rugby.”