Tom Tierney appointed Ireland women’s rugby coach

Former scrumhalf will work under new director of Sevens and women’s rugby Anthony Eddy

Former Ireland scrumhalf Tom Tierney has been appointed head coach of the Ireland women’s rugby team. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Former Ireland scrumhalf Tom Tierney has been appointed head coach of the Ireland women’s rugby team. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

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Former Ireland scrumhalf Tom Tierney has been appointed the head coach of the senior women’s team by the IRFU.

Tierney, who played eight times for Ireland, is a “level five accredited coach” with experience working with Garryowen and Cork Constitution. He takes over from Philip Doyle and will work under Anthony Eddy, the former general manager of Sevens rugby with the Australian Rugby Union, who has also been confirmed as the IRFU director of both men’s and women’s Sevens and the women’s XV rugby programmes.

In the third “full-time” appointment announced, “Marian Earls has been installed as head of strength and conditioning for Sevens and Women’s Rugby” as the IRFU looks to amalgamate both codes.

“A review of the existing women’s rugby representative structures revealed a need for greater integration of both the 15-a-side and Sevens programmes from both a coaching and player support perspective,” said IRFU performance director David Nucifora.

“We believe we have put in place a strong coaching unit and the appropriate support structures that will enable both versions of the game to drive on in tandem. The establishment of three full-time positions signifies the IRFU’s commitment to creating a high performance environment for Irish representative women’s rugby.”

An IRFU statement added Tierney, who coached the club international squad to victories over England and Scotland last season, “will commence his role with the Ireland Women’s team ahead of the 2015 RBS 6 Nations Championship”.

Eddy has previously worked under Nucifora in the ARU’s high-performance unit, while Earls is currently the Connacht Academy’s strength and conditioning coach, having worked with the women’s team already “in the build up to and during the 2014 IRB Women’s Rugby World Cup”.

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