19 Jun CONTINUITY THE KEY AS RAVENS CONFIRM COACHING SETUP
Bridgend Ravens can confirm their coaching team, set to lead the team into the 2020/21 Indigo Premiership campaign.
With the club now in the hands of its members, the coaching team have been given full control over on the field matters as they look to improve the fortunes of last season. Preparations for 2020/21 have been underway for sometime, with the coaching team working quickly formulate their squad which will strengthen the bid to finish higher in the Indigo Premiership next season.
The coaching team will be led by Head Coach, Steve Jones who continues in his role for a second season. Former Wales and Dragons Hooker Jones took the reigns at the start of the 2019/20 season following two seasons as Forwards Coach. After a mixed first season in charge, he’s excited to get things underway with the new campaign when it’s safe to do so.
‘I’m really glad to keep the coaching team together from last season. It was a difficult season for many reasons but we’re excited for next season and feel that the experiences of last season have taught us plenty of lessons to take into this.
We had a difficult pre season last season, but we have hit the ground running this year. We are fortunate we could put our plans in place early and as a coaching team the new board have given us free reign on all preparations for the new season.
I’m glad that Alun Wyn will continue as Defence and Scrum Coach, with Tom Grabham looking after the Back Division – a role which he stepped into when Richard Fussell joined up with Wales u20 earlier this year.
We’re also really pleased to add Jeff Pick as Assistant Skills Coach. Jeff’s rugby experience is vast, and we’re very happy to have him add his expertise to an already talented setup.’
As mentioned by Steve, we are also pleased to retain the services of Forwards Coach, Alun Wyn Davies. Alun Wyn joined Bridgend Ravens at the start of the 19/20 season after a successful stint in charge of Cardiff University where he was credited with the much improved fortunes of the Welsh University’s rugby department.
Alun Wyn will be assisted by a new addition to the team, Assistant Forwards and Skills Coach, Jeff Pick. Jeff is an experienced coach and bolsters the coaching outfit with an exceptional knowledge of rugby. His coaching career started at Heol y Cyw, before stints with Glamorgan Wanderers and Aberavon in the Premiership. He has also coached at Llanharan, Dinas Powys and with the Ospreys Academy. Of late, Jeff has worked with Maesteg, Kenfig Hill and Pencoed.
Tom Grabham makes the step up to lead the back division as Backs Coach for the coming season. Tom returned to the club ahead of 19/20 as assistant to Richard Fussell, but with Richard departing the club to focus on his role with the Ospreys, former Raven and Tondu product Tom has been given the opportunity to run the rule over the backs for 20/21.
Team Manager Meredith Griffith has also committed to the club, staying in post for a fifth consecutive season. An experienced rugby operator, Ed joined Bridgend Ravens in 2016 and has been a mainstay of the coaching department ever since.
Chairman Norman Spain commented ‘As far back as January this year our Head Coach Steve Jones, or Jabba, as he is more commonly known, along with Team Manager Ed Griffith were tasked with assembling a squad of players and a coaching team in preparation for the forthcoming season.
They were empowered to act as they deemed fit without any outside influences and within a dedicated budget and to report directly to the Ravens Management, a situation that has not been enjoyed for many seasons.
Jabba and Ed have worked extremely well, despite the pandemic and lockdown, in doing just what they were asked to do and squad details will be unveiled shortly. The coaching team, a mix of old and new faces, with set roles now have the opportunity to work unhindered with the squad to shape the Ravens into a successful team.’
Bridgend Ravens Club Membership for the 2020/21 season are now on sale. Membership starts at just £60 under the Early bird scheme. Click here for more information and to purchase your membership today.