Lowe swaps the SRU for AFL
September 27, 2012
Graham Lowe will leave the SRU at the end of November © PA Photos
The Scottish Rugby Union's director of performance rugby Graham Lowe has opted to end his tenure in Scotland to return to the Antipodes.
Lowe has held the post for three years and will take up the high performance manager position at Australian Football League (AFL) side the Western Bulldogs. Lowe is originally from New Zealand and explained the reasons behind his decision saying: "It is with some regret that I will be leaving now as much has been put in place to ensure Scotland retains and builds on its place and heritage in world rugby.
"However, after five years on the road it is a good time to take my young family back south and the opportunity of moving into Aussie Rules with the Western Bulldogs will be both exciting and challenging."
Lowe will leave the SRU after the November Tests and his legacy will include the restructuring of the performance department and the changed way in which it conducts its player acquisition and contracting policy.
The SRU's chief executive Mark Dodson paid tribute to Lowe saying: "Graham has played a pivotal role in the development and improvement of our high-performance rugby teams and has underlined the importance of strength and conditioning in our programmes.
"The insight he has brought on what it requires to be successful at the highest levels of the game has been invaluable and both our pro-clubs, Edinburgh Rugby and Glasgow Warriors, have benefited from his approach.
"Graham has also shown huge determination and energy to raise standards throughout our club game and I know he is proud to have played a part in the changes to the club season structure over the past three years and the continuing development and competitiveness of our Premier rugby competition.
"His understanding of performance planning has helped to shape our strategy for the next few years yet I think what has endeared him most to a variety of people in the game in Scotland is his ability to put the player and individual improvement at the heart of his philosophy."
Scotland head coach Andy Robinson added: "I have thoroughly enjoyed working with Lowie over these last three years. He is a fierce competitor and knows what is required to be the best. He has inspired high standards and has set Scotland on the right path. It's now vital that we build on the foundations that he has laid through his leadership."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
The controversial tackling technique will be in full swing in Dublin on Sunday, writes Conor O'Shea, and could be a decisive factor for Ireland
"This team deserves to be recognised as the greatest of all time." Huw Richards looks at Gareth Edwards' final match for Wales
The two leading contenders for the best modern open-side flanker go head to head in Paris on Saturday. John Taylor assesses the tale of the tape