IRFU Names Scott Bemand As Ireland Women's New Head Coach

IRFU Names Scott Bemand As Ireland Women's New Head Coach
Jessica Gardiner
Jessica Gardiner

The Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU) has appointed Scott Bemand as the new Head Coach of the Ireland Women's squad, signing a three-year contract.

Bemand, an Englishman, will join the IRFU on 21 August and will be in charge of the Ireland squad ahead of the WXV3 campaign in Dubai, with matches on 14, 21, and 28 October. He brings a wealth of experience, having been a professional rugby union player at Harlequins, Leicester Tigers, and Bath before transitioning to coaching.

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Bemand previously served as the lead coach of the England Women XVs team, contributing to their success in the 2017 and 2022 Women's Rugby World Cups. Under his guidance, England achieved six Six Nations titles, including five Grand Slams, and reached the number one world ranking.

In response to his appointment, Scott Bemand said, "I am proud to join the IRFU at this exciting time for the game in Ireland. It is clear how ambitious they are to grow the women's game, and I believe there is a promising talent pool of players who will help create a new chapter for the sport here. I look forward to working with the players and coaches and shaping a new path."

Elaine Ryan has also been confirmed as the IRFU Women's XV National Teams Programme Manager. A former Ireland Sevens international, Ryan held positions as the IRFU Under-18 and Development Sevens Team Manager and Women XV's Team Manager between 2016 and 2019. She will begin her new role on 4th September after working as a teacher in Australia.

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Elaine Ryan shared her excitement about rejoining the IRFU, stating, "I believe that the future is bright for the women's game in Ireland, and I am proud to be back with the IRFU as we embark on exciting challenges in the months ahead. I look forward to working with the players and management to achieve our objectives."

Gillian McDarby, IRFU Head of Women's Performance & Pathways, welcomed the new additions, expressing confidence in Bemand's fresh and dynamic approach to coaching and Elaine's experience: “His knowledge of the existing landscape in Ireland and across the international game means that he is well placed to hit the ground running as the squad steps up its preparations for WXV in Dubai this autumn. We are also pleased to welcome back Elaine. She is hugely knowledgeable and passionate about Irish rugby and I believe that Elaine’s experience and skillset will add greatly to the environment over the coming years.”

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