Mike Ruddock steps down as U-20s coach

Nigel Carolan to replace Ruddock who will focus on club rugby with Lansdowne

Mike Ruddock: “It has been difficult trying to juggle the ever increasing demands of the age grade programme whilst coaching Lansdowne in the Ulster Bank League and now it’s time to concentrate on trying to add another UBL title to the one we won in 2013.”

Mike Ruddock: “It has been difficult trying to juggle the ever increasing demands of the age grade programme whilst coaching Lansdowne in the Ulster Bank League and now it’s time to concentrate on trying to add another UBL title to the one we won in 2013.”

 

The IRFU has appointed Nigel Carolan as Ireland’s new under-20s coach after Mike Ruddock announced his resignation.

Ruddock, a former Grand Slam winning coach with Wales, apparently wants to focus his attention on Lansdowne, who he led to the Ulster Bank League last season.

Under his stewardship Ireland rose to fourth in the under-20s rankings and reached the semi-finals of the Junior World Cup in New Zealand last year.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to work with the Ireland under-20 team and it has been very rewarding,” Ruddock explained today. In particular our performances on the world stage have been extremely competitive and I am pleased to be able to hand over the reins knowing that the team is now a top four ranked nation.

“It has been difficult trying to juggle the ever increasing demands of the age grade programme whilst coaching Lansdowne in the Ulster Bank League and now it’s time to concentrate on trying to add another UBL title to the one we won in 2013.”

Carolan, who will continue his current role with the Connacht academy, added: “It is an exciting opportunity to be working with the top under-20 talent from the four provinces.

“I am looking forward to working closely with the other provincial academy managers to maximise the potential of the talent at our disposal.”

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