The coaching team for Scotland under-20 has been finalised, with two highly respected Scottish coaches confirmed as Sean Lineen’s lieutenants for the coming season.
Simon Cross again takes up his position as defence coach with the national age-grade side having been part of the set-up for the past two seasons. Cross, former captain of Edinburgh Rugby while a professional player, has established a reputation as one of the best young coaches in the country as Head Coach at Edinburgh Accies.
He’ll be joined by Gala native, John Dalziel, who will look after the forwards.
Dalziel, a former Scotland 7s international and former captain of the Scotland Club XV, is currently second in command at Melrose RFC, and remains a vital part of the playing staff at the club.
They will be at the Scotland under-20s first training camp of the season, which begins on Monday, 8 October
Head coach Lineen said: “We have two young Scottish coaches who are hard-working, enthusiastic and have a great knowledge of the game and the club scene.
It’s my job to give the young players every tool and every bit of access possible to make them better rugby players and John and Simon will be crucial in helping deliver that.
“They won’t just be looking after their own areas, but have wide-ranging roles to help develop and improve the squad as a whole.
“We have an extensive programme for the coming season, including training with a number of clubs, and we must peak for two massive tournaments in the 6 Nations and the IRB Junior World Championship. It’s important that we put in place an environment that is as professional as possible.”
Both Cross and Dalziel have signed on with the under-20 set up until at least May 2014, providing continuity in the coaching team.
Dalziel commented: “I’m delighted to be given this opportunity and to work with someone like Sean who has a wealth of experience of coaching at the top level.
“’I’ve also had the privilege of working with Simon as part of the Scotland under-20A support set-up for the last two years, so I know just how good a coach he is.
“I hope to bring my own experiences to the game, particularly around the set-piece, and help us really develop the technical side of the game. That can give us a crucial advantage in what will be a very competitive season.
“We’ll be working to identify the areas with strength and depth and get the most out of this squad of players.”