Old Wesley RFC is proud to announce the appointment of Darragh Coyle to the role of Club Rugby Coordinator. Darragh arrived at Old Wesley at the beginning of the 2022/23 season, taking up the role of Contact Skills Coach with the Senior 1st XV & Head Coach of the Senior 2nd XV, and has been a positive addition to the club. “I absolutely loved my first season with the club. Getting the opportunity to work with such a high calibre of player and to learn off some of the incredible coaches at the club really accelerated my development as a coach. The nature of the AIL and Metro Div 1 is that every game carries a massive weight of importance, and you want to keep the momentum going for as long as possible. Every week is a new challenge, and you have to recover from setbacks as quickly as getting back down to earth on the good days.” said Darragh when asked about taking the role at Old Wesley.
Piecing together the role of Rugby Coordinator has been in the works over the past 12 months with massive work going on behind the scenes to ensure that the right candidate was found and that they could dedicate the time to be a full time point of contact and support for members of the club. “It was probably a case of coming in initially, and meeting a lot of great people, who had fascinating ideas and plans, but did not necessarily have the time to commit to actioning out those ideas. What I feel I can give the role is matched by what I feel the role can offer me from the perspective of being able to be involved with the behind-the-scenes management and day-to-day running of the club. It is completely new territory for me but I think when you look at the general trajectory that the club has been on, across all levels over the past 10 years, and combine that with the resources at our disposal, there has never been a better time to be involved with Old Wesley.” Darragh said.
Darragh has spoken passionately about his development centred approach and is excited about tackling a variety of different areas. “Essentially, I will be responsible for overseeing the development of players, coaches and the club as a whole. We want players to feel as though they are getting a unique experience at Old Wesley regardless of the level, and that if they choose to represent their schools at secondary level, that they have fond memories that draw them back to the club to play with the Under 20s. Clearly, as a club we have a responsibility to maintain and nurture those relationships. To do that we will be working hard to support the coaches at all levels ensuring that they have the tools and support to better themselves. We are targeting larger than life moments for everyone involved with the club.”
Behind the scenes it has been a busy summer for many at Old Wesley, and as we come to the closing stages of pre-season there is an excitement around the club to see the product of all the work that has been put in by a number of significant people. Darragh noted that, “At the top end you only have to watch training sessions on a Tuesday & Thursday to see the impact that the tour to South Africa had on our Senior Squad, both the players and the coaching group. There is a real unity there. (Director of Rugby) David Jermyn worked tirelessly to offer the players an unforgettable experience. Similarly, the restructure of the Junior Rugby programme to include a Colts XV is something that everyone at the club feels extremely positive about, and we’re so happy to be able to offer a level of rugby that supports our younger players, who have graduated out of our U20s programme, but aren’t entirely sure where they fit in the Men’s pathway quite yet. Andrew Egan and his team will do an excellent job with those players.”
Another area Darragh hopes to be able to support is the evolution of the Girls Minis pathway, where the club has, in the last couple of years, looked to develop the programme starting at Under 6. “Certainly, when I think back to my time in Minis rugby, it is easy to recall the experiences of playing a team that included one or two girls, because that was all there were, just the one or two. Looking at the state of play now, the coaches on the grass have worked incredibly hard to offer a programme that is exclusive to young female players. I have listened to the passion with which the coaches speak, and their vision for the current crop of Minis Girls to make up the very first Old Wesley AIL women’s team is one that is massively exciting.” We are sure that this will be an exciting and memorable season for everyone involved with the club.
The President, Ronan Bools closed the conversation by saying: “On behalf of everyone at Old Wesley, I would like to extend a warm welcome to Darragh, to all players, coaches, management, volunteers and supporters as we approach the start of the regular season in the coming weeks. A particular welcome to all the new faces, and we hope that your time at Old Wesley not only meets but exceeds your expectations, and that our environment assists you in your pursuit of larger-than-life moments.”