Jack joins the coaching set-up at Weston

PUBLISHED: 14:13 09 August 2017 | UPDATED: 14:13 09 August 2017

Jon Richardson and Jack Gadd.

Jon Richardson and Jack Gadd.

Archant

Jack Gadd has joined the coaching set-up at Weston after five years at near neighbours Hornets.

Jack Gadd, the former Wales Under-20 and Bristol centre, has joined the coaching set-up at Weston ahead of their return to the South West Premier League, previously named National Three South West.

Gadd has joined head coach Glenn Dickson and assistant coach Darren Crompton looking after the senior squad after five seasons with neighbours Hornets, which saw them win three promotion and victories in two Somerset County Cup finals.

The Weston squad reported back for pre-season training at the beginning of July, but face their first real test on Saturday at home in a triangular competition with Welsh Championship side Beddau and Northern Premier side Lymm, kick-off 3 pm.

The Seasiders travel to Hyde Park the following week to face National League Two South side Taunton (3pm), before hosting Brixham in their opening South West Premier match on September 2, (3pm).

Gadd said: “Having met the people running the Weston club I thought they had got realistic ambitions and it was something that I wanted to be part of. Thankfully, they have let be part of that and looking forward to the start of the season.

“We had five weeks of pre-season training and a bit of a training camp weekend in Plymouth and there is a real good community atmosphere around the whole club and everyone pulling in the same direction.”

Gadd is a product of the Bristol Academy set-up and made 18 senior appearances before the club before a hip condition from birth forced him to retire from the professional game four years ago.

The RFU Level 3 coach, who is head of rugby at Weston College, will look after the first team on match days with the forwards coach, Crompton, as Dickson hopes to return to playing duties which were cut short last season due to injury.

Weston was promoted as Tribute South West 1 West champions having gone through the whole league campaign unbeaten and 26 points clear of runners-up Clevedon, who they also beat in the Somerset County Cup final.

The Seasiders have had two seasons out of South West Premier League, having been relegated at the end of the 2014/15 season, and Gadd hopes that his recent knowledge of this higher league will be of real benefit to his new club.

Gadd added: “It must have been great to be part of last season but everyone accepts that is behind us now and we face a new challenge. We all recognise that we will have to work really hard to repeat that success.

“But, the squad has bought into that challenge and these pre-season games will all us iron-out any issues before we welcome Brixham, who are a really strong side, for the season opener.”

The Weston club has been shortlisted for the Facility Development of the Year at this year’s Crabbie’s National Rugby Awards which will be held at the Twickenham Stadium at the end of this month.

Tribute Somerset Premier champions Winscombe, who lost just one of 26 league games last season, have been shortlisted for the Rugby Club of the Year award, but face stiff opposition from the likes of Hartpury, who have gained promotion to the GKIPA Championship.

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