Heriot’s set out their stall with strong coaching line-up for 2024-25 season

Bob McKillop will take charge of 1st XV in the Men's Premiership next season with Ben Cairns pursuing professional coaching opportunities

Heriot's have unveiled an extensive coaching line-up for next season. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk
Heriot's have unveiled an extensive coaching line-up for next season. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk

HERIOT’S have announced an extensive and highly experienced coaching line-up for their men’s teams for next season, when the domestic game in Scotland will return to its traditional structure following the discontinuation of Super Series.

Bob McKillop, the former Scotland Under-20s and current Edinburgh Inter-District Championship coach, will take charge of the 1st XV (having previously filled that role between 2006 and 2011 and stayed involved with the club since then as 2nd XV coach and to provide coaching and mentoring assistance). He will be assisted by Super Series coaches Stuart Edwards (attack) and John Hardie (contact), along with Jamie Parker (forwards) from the current Club XV set-up.

Ben Cairns, who has coached the Heriot’s Super Series team since October 2022, will step away from Goldenacre to pursue full-time rugby opportunities.

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Meanwhile, Phil Smith, the long-serving and highly-decorated coach of the Heriot’s Club XV, will transition into a newly created role of ‘Head of Player and Coach Development’ with a focus on talent progression across the club.

Fin Gillies, currently forwards coach of the Super Series team, will step away from a full-time coaching role at Heriot’s but will remain involved in player development.

“We have placed a huge emphasis in continuing the level of rugby we have been accustomed to throughout the Super Series, and the 1st XV coaching team we have put in place will enable us to do that,” said a statement issued by the club.

“The player performance pathway remains a key priority at Goldenacre and we are delighted to announce a very strong 2nd and 2AXV coaching team, with two of our most distinguished players making moves into coaching.

Oliver [OJ] Brown is appointed 2nd XV head coach, with Michael Goldie named as 2A XV head coach. OJ and Michael will be assisted by former 1st XV captain and Premiership Player-of-the-Year Iain Wilson who is stepping back from playing full-time, and Super Series prop Chris Keen who will take on a player/scrum coach role for the 1st and 2/2A XVs.

“The team is further assisted by coaches Stewart Mustard, Hasan Ilter, Adam Woolfson and Keith Dickinson.

Liam Steele will continue to focus on 7s following our successful participation in the circuit this year.

Sandi Lyall continues in her role as Head of Medical, alongside Tara Aldin and the rest of the physiotherapy team. Mark Sinclair and Kieran Noble will remain in charge of S&C, and Team Managers will be headed up by Chris Gray and John Elliot.

Sean Lineen continues in his role as Head of Rugby Development, working with Neil Meikle, Director of Rugby, on the delivery of the rugby strategy both on and off the pitch.”

Premiership coaching line-ups take shape

About David Barnes 3989 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including The 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.

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