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Dublin: 11 °C Friday 5 June, 2020

Former Munster back row earns new coaching role in France

James Coughlan has been appointed to the role of Provence forwards coach.

FORMER MUNSTER NUMBER eight James Coughlan will join French club Provence Rugby from next season as forwards coach, bringing an end to his five-year association with Pau.

Coughlan, who joined Pau from his native province in 2014 before moving into coaching and the role of the club’s academy director, has achieved excellent results with the espoirs [U23] team this season. 

James Coughlan Coughlan made 137 appearances for Munster. Source: Billy Stickland/INPHO

The Cork native has been appointed to succeed Patrick Pezery at Provence as part of a backroom reshuffle for the 2019/20 campaign, with former Canada international Jamie Cudmore also leaving his role as team manager.

Coughlan made 137 appearances for Munster during his playing career, winning the province’s Player of the Year award in 2011, while he also represented Ireland Wolfhounds and the 7s national team. 

The 38-year-old spent three seasons playing for Pau before hanging up his boots in 2017, and after completing his French academy coaching diploma, has seen his stock rise as a promising young coach.

“His knowledge of the very high level will be an additional asset for the club in the quest for its goals,” a Provence statement read.

Provence currently sit seventh in Pro D2 and are targeting a best-ever finish of 11th [achieved in 2011 and 2012] heading into the remaining games of the campaign. 

Meanwhile, Ireland’s pool for next month’s Hong Kong 7s Qualifier competition has been confirmed, with the winner of the tournament earning a place on the World Sevens Series for 2020. 

After making exciting progress in recent years, it’s a huge opportunity for Ireland to qualify for the elite circuit, with Anthony Eddy’s side set to come up against Russia, Uruguay and Jamaica in Pool F.

The tournament takes place between 5-7 April. 

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Ryan Bailey

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