Former New Zealand Rugby League international & Leeds Rhinos captain Gary Mercer joins Harrogate Rugby Union as Defence Coach

25 May 2022

Gary Mercer has been appointed Defence Coach at Harrogate RUFC to work with newly appointed Men’s Director of Rugby Martyn Wood & Chair of Rugby, Roger Shackleton.

Mercer said:

I’m very much looking forward to taking on the new role of Defence Coach with the Aces. I am very confident about the team’s future. An excellent plan has been put in place and things are certainly happening at the club.

Men’s Director of Rugby Martyn Wood, said:

Gary Mercer has incredible experience in both codes at club and international level, and we will be drawing upon his knowledge to produce the required step-change in our defence. Having Gary join us will add a new range of skills to our coaching set-up. Working alongside our existing Head Coach Sam Fox, we are expecting great things.

Mercer will remain as Head of Rugby and tutor at Ashville College, who are also one of the club’s main sponsors. Mercer played for Leeds, Bradford, Warrington, Halifax and New Zealand in rugby league and had a spell as coach at Halifax before switching codes to union.

His coaching career in rugby union includes time at Yorkshire Carnegie, as defence coach for Glasgow Warriors and in charge of National Two outfit Biggar, as well as working with the Scottish Rugby Union Academy.

The new appointment follows a string of other new recruits and personnel changes across coaching, team management & senior roles within the club in readiness for the coming season.

National League Rugby have now confirmed next season’s fourteen National Two North clubs will be Blaydon, Chester, Fylde, Harrogate, Huddersfield, Hull Ionians, Otley, Preston Grasshoppers, Rotheram, Sedgley Park, Sheffield, Sheffield Tigers, Tynedale, Wharfedale. Fixtures for the new season are expected to be announced by 16th June 2022.


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