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Saul Heads Up Academy Coaching

Saul Heads Up Academy Coaching 5 Jan 2022

RGC are delighted to welcome Saul Nelson as the Head Coach of our Junior Academy and U18s programme in a new full-time role.

Performance Manager Josh Leach is looking forward to seeing Saul work with the current players and coaching group “Saul added great value as forwards coach with the Premiership side back into 2019/20, so to have him lead our Under 18s programme is fantastic for RGC and fantastic for the young aspiring players coming through the pathway. As a player has been through the national pathway himself, representing Wales at age-grade then progressing into a professional career with Bristol and Exeter.

Saul has used that experience in his coaching career, establishing one of the leading college rugby programmes in England at SGS College Filton, mentoring many players through to National Age Grade and professional contracts.

Saul's aim will be to develop our programme to a new level, offering greater support to our Junior Academy and Under 18 players, seeing more and more North and Mid Wales players go on to play for Wales age grade, play for RGC, play professionally, and play for Wales."

Also key to Saul’s appointment is his North Wales routes, as the Pathway is about developing North Wales coaches and staff as well as a player. Saul has a great passion for North Wales rugby having started his rugby with Rhyl RFC.

Having been part of the RGC set up previously, Saul remained in contact with coaches and players  “It’s nice to see a few familiar faces from my previous time up here, and even during lockdown, I kept in touch with players and coaches.

Coming back gives me a great opportunity to progress my career after my time in a college environment

I loved my time at SGS and have been fortunate to coach there for 9 years.  I take a huge amount of pride in the players that came through and progresses both as rugby players, but more importantly good individuals.

I now have to use my skillset to produce more North Wales Players into the senior set-up and help progress us as a region

I’m coming in during the season, so I need to get to know the players and of course the need to adapt to my and what I expect from a rugby perspective. As a player, it can be good to hear a new voice and get them to see rugby differently.  The foundation is to get them to show some of their own personality on the pitch, and the challenge is to get these players to be confident to express themselves during a game.

The coaches have done a fantastic job and I am looking forward to helping support and progress the standard of coaching we deliver.

I was hugely fortunate in my rugby career that when I retired, I went straight into coaching.  The craft of coaching evolves as you grow in the role, and a big part of that is having an environment that benefits progression.”