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Wales confirm coaching staff for Six Nations Under-20s

Wales confirm coaching staff for Six Nations Under-20s

Wales confirm coaching staff for Six Nations Under-20s

Wales have confirmed the make-up of their coaching staff led by Byron Hayward for the Under-20 Six Nations.

Dragons academy coach Shaun Connor, who coached Russia’s backline at the 2019 Rugby World Cup, will take charge of the breakdown while there is a return to the set-up for Richard Kelly, who previously worked under Wayne Pivac’s assistant Gareth Williams with the age-grade side.

Kelly will take on the role of set-piece coach having been part of the Scarlets coaching system since 2015, while Cardiff pathway coach Craig Everett is confirmed as defence coach.

Hayward said: “I’m very happy with the coaching group we have now got.

“We took our time in finalising it as it was important, we got the right people in.

“Shaun has obviously got a lot of experience coaching PRO14 and international rugby with Russia, so he adds a massive amount of experience but it’s also about giving opportunities to up and coming coaches.

“I know Rich has coached at the Scarlets but he’s still relatively young at 34, young in terms of coaching and experience but he has a wealth of knowledge, particularly at the set-piece which is what he is doing with us, and especially the lineout area which was his forte when he played so he brings a lot of experience from a playing perspective.

“Craig Everett in terms of coaching would be considered inexperienced but he is coming in to do defence which is a massive role.

“Hopefully, I can help him out in that area with my past experiences and he is doing a great job in fairness. I’m really happy in what he is doing, he’s got the characteristics you need as a coach, a very high work ethic and a real desire to improve the players.

“For me it’s not just about being technically and tactically sound, it’s also about being good people as well and fitting in with the environment we want to create – so from that perspective I’m really happy.”

Wales kick-off their Championship against Ireland at Musgrave Park on Friday February 4.