CONFIRMED: Sharks snag Irish coaching brain
NEWS: Irish Rugby Union reveals that Leinster Academy manager Noel McNamara has been appointed to a senior coaching role with a South African franchise.
Although the Irish Rugby Unios did not reveal the details of McNamara’s new deal, it has been confirmed that he will join the South African side the Sharks.
Eduard Coetzee, Chiefs Executive Officer (CEO) of the Sharks, told rugby365.com that the Durban-based franchise has landed McNamara’s signature.
The former Ireland Under 20 coach will join the current coaching team under Sean Everitt.
Coetzee revealed to rugby365com that McNamara will take the role of the new backline and attack coach.
He will replace Dave Williams.
McNamara was head coach of the Ireland U20s from 2018 to 2020 winning a Six Nations Grand Slam in 2019. He was appointed academy manager at Leinster in the same year.
His coaching journey began at Glenstal Abbey in Limerick before an eight-year tenure at Clongowes Wood in Kildare which produced two Leinster Senior Schools Cup titles during his time in charge.
Noel joined the IRFU’s elite player pathway team in 2016 as a development officer at Leinster. He has coached both the Ireland and Leinster schools representative teams as well as Leinster U19s, U20s and Leinster A.
“I am grateful to the IRFU and Leinster Rugby for helping to facilitate this move which will be another great learning and development opportunity for me as a coach,” McNamara said.
“I have received great support to date on my coaching journey garnering experience with multiple underage teams, exposure to senior provincial and national coaches and getting the opportunity of a three-month placement with North Harbour in New Zealand.
“This appointment is exciting for both me and my family and I am looking forward to getting started.”
“Noel is a smart ambitious young coach who has achieved success at underage level,” David Nucifora, IRFU Performance Director commented.
“This is an exciting senior role for Noel in South Africa where he will be exposed to different rugby and coaching culture and which will no doubt greatly benefit his development.
“Noel has progressed through the coaching pathway in Ireland and in recent discussions with Noel, it was clear that he was in need of a fresh challenge that would help accelerate his coaching career. We looked at different environments and what could be a good fit and this definitely offers a fantastic opportunity in a senior role.
“Noel’s time in South Africa is sure to benefit Irish Rugby in the future. We wish him well and will be monitoring his progress closely.”