Connacht reveal coaching ticket update

Province begin replacing attack coach Nigel Carolan and forwards’ coach Jimmy Duffy

Connacht have begun filling the impending voids by the departure of attack coach Nigel Carolan and forwards' coach Jimmy Duffy with the announcement that Peter Wilkins will switch from defence to attack.

Wilkins will be supported by Mossy Lawler who has been appointed assistant attack and skills coach, in addition to Colm Tucker who comes on board as defence and forwards technical skills coach.

A process to find a new forwards coach is already underway which, when completed, will increase the coaching team from four to five, thus "providing head coach Andy Friend with greater coverage across each of the respective areas of the game" according to a statement by the province. Wilkins, Lawlor and Tucker have all signed two-year contracts running in tandem with Friend.

Wilkins first joined Connacht as defence coach as 2017, having previously held the same role at Edinburgh Rugby for two seasons, after spending eight years in Australia, where he first began work at Queensland Reds as performance analyst, before becoming skills coach and then defence coach at the club, as well as head coach of the ‘A’ side.


Lawler joined Connacht as a coach in 2014 after a successful playing career with Munster and Wasps. Lawler made 65 appearances for Munster between 2001 and 2008, winning two Heineken Cups in the process. He has spent the last six years as elite player development officer in the Connacht academy and four years as head coach for the Connacht Eagles.

He has also been attack coach of the Ireland Under-18 Schools and head coach of the Ireland Under-19s.

Tucker joined Connacht in 2015 as coach development officer before moving to the role of provincial talent coach 12 months later and subsequently as elite player development officer, working primarily with the forwards in the Connacht academy and as forwards and defence coach for the Connacht Eagles.

During that time he was head coach of the Connacht Under-18s that won the 2018 Interprovincial Championship - a first in 10 years for the province. He was also coach of the Ireland Clubs and Schools team for three years, assistant coach to the Ireland Under-19s, and assistant coach to the Ireland Under-20s in 2019-21.

Gerry Thornley

Gerry Thornley

Gerry Thornley is Rugby Correspondent of The Irish Times