Edinburgh appoint Sean Everitt as ‘senior coach’

Rob Chrystie promoted from academy to assistant attack and skills coach 

Sean Everitt has joined Edinburgh as 'lead coach' on a one-year deal. Image: Edinburgh Rugby/Getty
Sean Everitt has joined Edinburgh as 'lead coach' on a one-year deal. Image: Edinburgh Rugby/Getty

EDINBURGH RUGBY have appointed South African Sean Everitt as “senior coach” subject to visa. He has been handed a one-year deal which brings him into line with the contracts of the assistant coaches already on the books.

The 53-year-old, who specialises in attack and backline, will head-up a backroom team consisting of Stevie Lawrie (forwards), Michael Todd (defence) and Rob Chrystie (who has been promoted from academy manager to assistant attack and skills coach).

Everitt has joined the capital outfit with immediate effect. His most recent role was with the Vodacom Bulls, where he has been a consultant since February, having previously spent three seasons with the Cell C Sharks, working with the likes of Siya Kolisi and Lukhanyo Am, before being sacked following a 35-0 a humiliating defeat to Cardiff Blues last November. He was a member of the Sharks organisation for 15 years  in total between 2007 and  2022).

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The club’s newly formed coaching structure will also see Steve Diamond continue as ‘Lead Rugby Consultant’ during the pre-season programme “to allow for a period of support and transition as Everitt takes the reins in the Scottish capital”.

“I’m honoured and delighted to be afforded a coaching opportunity at Edinburgh Rugby,” said Everitt. “Edinburgh has a proud history and I’m privileged to be part of their successful journey toward becoming a top club in Europe.

“I’d like to thank Mark Dodson [Scottish Rugby CEO], Jim Mallinder [Scottish Rugby Performance Director], and Douglas Struth [Edinburgh Rugby Managing Director] for the confidence they have in my ability as a coach. My family and I are excited and are looking forward to our future in Edinburgh.”

Dodson indicated that further appointments could be on the cards in the weeks and months ahead.

“We are very pleased to be bringing a coach of Sean’s experience and approach to Edinburgh for the coming season,” he said. “The way his teams play compliments Edinburgh’s own attacking philosophy, which coupled with his knowledge of the BKT URC and depth of coaching experience were key factors for us.

“It is also great to see Rob Chrystie’s progression to a role with Edinburgh and we are excited for what he can bring to the team at this level. We may also take the opportunity to make additions to further strengthen the coaching group as the season progresses.”

Struth added: “Sean brings significant experience and pedigree to the role, having spent 15 years developing and rising to the top of the Sharks coaching system.

“He has a reputation for being a forward-thinking, winning, and attack-minded coach who is passionate about developing talent and getting the best out of his players – which is exactly what we’re looking for, as we continue to build a coaching structure for a successful future here at Edinburgh Rugby.

“Sean has worked with and developed some of the biggest stars in South African rugby, which says a lot about his capability as a man-manager and leader, while his knowledge and understanding of the game from being a Head Coach in both Super Rugby and the BKT URC will bring a huge amount of value and insight to our coaching group.”

“We’re also delighted to see Rob step up to the role of skills and assistant attack coach,” he added.

“It’s a richly deserved promotion and showcases the pathway for young Scottish coaches to progress into the professional game. Rob has done a brilliant job with our academy since joining last year, and I’m sure he will continue to develop and grow as coach with us.

“I’d encourage all our supporters to really get behind Sean and the rest of the coaching group as they lead the team into the 2023-24 season.”

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About David Barnes 3800 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including he Herald/Sunday Herald, The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Daily Record, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.


  1. There are a lot of negative comments here without giving the guy a chance and implying he’s the cheap option etc.

    We need to be realistic here and recognise that Edinburgh (and Glasgow) are not going to attract an absolute top level coach. If they were job-hunting, those guys would be tapped by any of the top 10 or 12 international sides, any Top 14 side, most of the English Premiership, a NZ provincial side or a SA province not to mention at least 50% of the URC teams being more appealing to a coach. Looking at that list, that’s 40-odd coaching roles that are more attractive than our sides so maybe it isn’t too surprising that we have to look a bit further down the foodchain.

  2. Hadn’t heard of him prior to the appointment so can understand Edinburgh fans being underwhelmed and dissatisfied. If Edinburgh doesn’t hit the ground running next season then the Dam could be a cold, empty place. Blair has been a convenient scapegoat for last season but others in the coaching cadre and behind the scenes are equally culpable.

  3. Strange appointment and he’ll no doubt bring in Saffers instead of promoting academy kids. No other home grown talent available as head coach? Makes the Super6 even more irrelevant as a growth programme for players and coaches. Dodson’s best mate Steve Diamond still hanging around too – all very fishy.

  4. Disappointing appointment – and an awful long time to wait for it. This guy has won nothing and has no pedigree to speak of. And losing 35-0 to Cardiff is as bottom of the barrel as it gets. If he can’t produce results from this incredibly talented Edinburgh team, then hopefully 12 months will be his absolute max shelf life.

  5. Reading the various press articles again – is there any suggestion that this appointment is not the full answer- with the emphasis being in “Senior Coach” taking charge, notably not referred to as the “Head Coach”???

  6. A lot, me included, were not optimistic when Franco was announced at Glasgow, but certainly been proved wrong in the first season. However, there was a lot of chat from SA about the high regard that they held for Franco – has anyone heard from SA mates about how he is viewed there, ‘cos let’s be honest, they know their rugby!

    It would be great to see two Scottish club teams hitting their straps at the same time, so here’s hoping this works out as well as it could.

  7. Very underwhelming given the SRU have known since early February. Crowley, Les Kiss, a multitude of folk available; George Ford’s father for example?. It’s almost like the SRU didn’t go chasing someone but waited as long as possible for applications to then pick the best of the bunch. Mike Blair could have been kept in some role in Scotland, but he was allowed to go join Dave Reniie in Japan? Why? As more than a few infer, this seems to be all about £££ and not talent. Franco has proved a winner, Glasgow on a roll. We can only hope likewise in Edinburgh, but Glasgow AND Edinburgh peaking at the same time? Wishful thinking…but I guess we never know until match day. LAck of TV now seems to be an issue..

    • Keeping Blair at Edinburgh would have been a mistake for him and for the Club – if you have ever worked for or with a demoted manager you’ll know why! Wish blair all the very best in Japan.

  8. Where will we (exiled) supporters be watching the games I wonder, given Viaplays position.

  9. I have the same underwhelming feeling as when Franco Smith was appointed last year.
    Looking forward to being proved wrong once again….

  10. I was wrong with the Glasgow coach so I won’t comment, I just hope he does as well. Also any news on who, if anyone, will broadcast URC with Viaplay pulling out?

  11. To say I am underwhelmed would be a gross understatement. This smacks of a Dodson bargain basement swoop. No wonder the announcement was delayed until trusting, gullible supporters were pressurised into renewing their season tickets. I’m dreading the Cardiff Blues game next season.

  12. Somewhat underwhelming to say the least. He’s not currently a head coach and I do remember him being sacked from the Sharks after the home thrashing from Cardiff under humiliating circumstances. I can only hope he is better than his CV.


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