Wakley celebrates birthday by being appointed Bury’s new head coach
PUBLISHED: 17:19 20 November 2018
Bury St Edmunds have appointed Welshman Nick Wakley as their new Head Coach, initially until the end of this season.
Wakley celebrated his 38th birthday today by being officially unveiled in his new post at The Haberden, as a successor to Director of Rugby, Jon Curry, who left at the start of this month due to a funding shortfall in the pro-am coaching structure.
The Cardiff-born former wing or centre, who played most of his rugby for Cardiff, Ebbw Wave, Doncaster Knights and Sale Sharks, has enjoyed a lot of coaching experience in recent years with the likes of Ebbw Vale, Wales Women and the Samurai International side.
Wakley’s first match in charge of Bury St Edmunds will be this Saturday, when they entertain Clifton in a National League Two South fixture, although he was in Cornwall to witness the Wolfpack’s dramatic 20-20 draw at Redruth last weekend.
“It’s a good birthday present, to be appointed here at Bury. I’m another year older, and another year greyer,” joked Wakley this evening.
“It’s something of a challenge, but I am always on the look out for challenges, and this is definitely one.
“I do have a Sevens background, and I go back a long way with Samurai and with (Bury’s Performance Director) Terry Sands, probably 20-plus years, as a player and a coach with Samuria.
“So that is probably where this opportunity has come along, but my background is as much in XVs rugby as it is in Sevens.
“I am very aware of Bury’s situation at the moment. In fact, over the last week I’ve probably watched more rugby games than I did in the whole of 2017!
“I’ve been doing my research, and seen 90% of Bury’s fixtures this season, so I think I am up to speed with how the team is performing, and with the players.
“I’ve tried to put aside individual meetings for the whole squad over the last week-and-a-half, and I reckon I’ve seen 70-80% of the players now.
“I know the areas we need to improve, and overall it’s been a great exercise for me. My main focus will be to improve on our defensive side of the game, because we have been conceding too many points,” added Wakley.
Bury are 11th in the table, with four wins from 11 games.