DANNY WILSON has been confirmed as the Scotland national team’s next full-time forwards coach. He will start in the role in August, replacing Dan McFarland, who is due to join Ulster as head coach in January.
Wilson was due to take on a coaching role with Wasps next season, however Scottish Rugby has agreed terms with the English Premiership side to allow his release from that contract.
“I’m delighted that we’ve been able to secure Danny’s services and would like to thank Wasps and Dai Young [Wasps Director of Rugby] for enabling that to happen,” said Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend.
“Danny has a lot of technical knowledge around the scrum, the lineout and the contact area, which is primarily the role he’ll perform in our coaching set-up. He also brings much more to our group through his experience as a head coach at senior club level and U20 level, helping teams and individuals reach their potential.
“We’re coming into a period where we’ll have more time with the players, particularly in the build-up to Rugby World Cup 2019, and I believe he’ll have a really positive impact on an already really good group of forwards and continue to make that a strength for Scotland.
“He’s someone I’ve got to know over the past few years and I am looking forward to seeing him working with our coaches and leading players.”
Wilson was forwards coach with the Dragons from 2010 to 2012 and the Scarlets from 2012 to 2014, at the same time as being head coach of Wales Under-20s, steering them to a third and second-place finish in the 2012 and 2013 Junior World Championships.
He then had a season with Bristol under former Scotland head coach Andy Robinson before joining Cardiff Blues as head coach in 2015, overseeing their European Challenge Cup success in Bilbao and helping them secure a return to the Heineken Champions Cup for the forthcoming season.
“To coach international rugby and go to a Rugby World Cup is obviously the pinnacle of the sport and the goal of most professional coaches. It was therefore a huge honour to be identified by Scotland and offered this role,” said Wilson.
“This has obviously been a little unexpected and happened very quickly, so I’d like to thank Dai Young and Wasps for their consideration and understanding of this situation and wish them the very best of luck for the future.
“I think Scotland have made huge strides in recent years and play an exciting brand of rugby, with an ever-growing, quality player base. I’m really looking forward to working with and learning from Gregor [Townsend] and the rest of the staff and players in Scotland.”
This, of course, means that Carl Hogg – who came into the set-up for the summer, hoping to earn a longer-term contract – will become surplus to requirements after Scotland’s final tour match against Argentina on Saturday
“I’d like to thank Carl for stepping in at short notice to work on an interim basis with our forwards. Carl’s done an excellent job in a short space of time, building on the work Dan [McFarland] has done around the lineout, as was evidenced by our maul against Canada,” said Townsend.
“I’ve enjoyed the past few weeks coaching alongside a good friend, and I wish him well in the future.
“As a coaching group, we’ll all be working hard over the next week to help our players finish the season on a high.”
Scott Johnson, the SRU’s Director of Rugby, said: “I’ve known Danny for a long time and I’ve seen him develop into a highly respected forwards coach. He has a wealth of experience across the broad forward disciplines of scrum, lineout and contact area that would be a welcome addition to any side and I’m delighted to have secured his services for the national team.
“I’d like to thank Carl for his excellent and innovative work in the lineout. He’s an experienced, senior operator and we are fortunate to have his services for the tour.”