Young named as Wasps head coach
June 30, 2011
Young will arrive at Adams Park in time for the 2011-12 season © Getty Images
Wasps have announced former Cardiff Blues coach Dai Young as their new director of rugby.
Young joins the Aviva Premiership side on a four-year deal from the Cardiff Blues where he has been in charge since 2002, first in a head coach capacity and then as director of rugby. He will take the reins from the start of July in time for the 2011-12 season that will begin with a high-profile clash against defending champions Saracens on September 3.
Wasps announcement comes after weeks of speculation during which it appeared that the Blues were unwilling to let their man go, but it now appears that the two clubs have reached an agreement to allow Young to make the journey across the Severn Bridge.
The former Blues coach enjoyed a successful time at the region, during which he took them to Anglo-Welsh Cup glory in 2009 and to the Heineken Cup semi-finals in 2008. Young also excelled at the top level of the game, winning 51 caps for Wales and travelling on three British & Irish Lions tours. During his time at the Blues, he also coached the Barbarians on their European tours for the past four years.
Wasps had an average season in 2010-11 by their high standards, finishing ninth and missing out on Heineken Cup qualification. Young is now charged with the task of returning the two-time Heineken Cup champions back to their former glory. "This is an enormous opportunity for me. I have loved my time with Cardiff but I am looking forward to a new experience in a new environment," Young said. "There is a hugely talented group of players there to work and the challenge to help get a great club into a position where they are once again challenging for success was too good to turn down.
Wasps chief executive Chris Thomas was understandably delighted to have finally got his man. "We are delighted to welcome Dai to London Wasps and we believe he is exactly the right person to take the club forward," Thomas said. "Dai brings a wealth of experience to the club and this is an appointment for the long-term. We remain an ambitious club and want to be competing at the highest level. Dai is the person to help us achieve these ambitions.
"Dai has done a sterling job in Cardiff, developing a host of young talent into international quality players as well as building an excellent team with strong spirit. We were hugely impressed with his vision for London Wasps which is in keeping with our key objective of developing sustained long-term success.
"We have worked very hard in recent months to put together a squad for next season which will give us far more balance and Dai will lead a squad which combines some hugely exciting young talent as well as some hard-nosed top level experience. "
The club have made ten signings ahead of next season including England hooker Steve Thompson, fly-half Nicky Robinson and former All Black Ross Filipo.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Huw Richards profiles French forward Walter Spanghero, a man who even rugby's hard men thought was a tough nut
"To be part of the Commonwealth Games, I'd wear anything. I'd wear a clown suit." Tom Hamilton talks to Scotland's Sean Lamont
Scrum Sevens looks back at how rugby has fared in both the early Olympics and the past four Commonwealth Games
"Cheika's been phenomenal. He gives you an incredible level of mental strength." Tom Hamilton talks to Waratahs star Jacques Potgieter