Wed | Nov 25, 2020

JRFU appoints Scottish coach

Published:Tuesday | July 2, 2019 | 12:27 AM
Newly appointed Jamaica Rugby Football Union coach, Stephen Lewis, shares instructions with the Jamaica Lady Crocs during a training session at Emmett Park in Kingston on Saturday morning. The Scotsman was appointed head coach of the senior men’s team, and assistant coach of their female counterparts.
Newly appointed Jamaica Rugby Football Union coach, Stephen Lewis, shares instructions with the Jamaica Lady Crocs during a training session at Emmett Park in Kingston on Saturday morning. The Scotsman was appointed head coach of the senior men’s team, and assistant coach of their female counterparts.

The Jamaica Rugby Football Union (JRFU) has named Stephen Lewis as its new coach. The Scotsman will take charge as the men’s and women’s national teams head into the Rugby Americas North (RAN) Sevens tournament on July 6 and 7 in the Cayman Islands. The announcement was made in a press conference at the Sports Development Foundation headquarters in St Andrew, yesterday.

JRFU chairman, Jerry Benzwick, said that he is pleased to be able to work alongside Lewis.

“We’re very excited about it,” Benzwick told the journalists gathered. “With his level of experience and knowledge, I think it can take us from being a regular team into world contenders. It’s a matter of process.”

Lewis is a certified World Rugby Level 3 professional coach and two-times USA Rugby Coach of the Year.

Benzwick explained that Lewis will take over the position of the head coach for the men’s rugby union team, while Coach Huntley Anderson will serve as his assistant. For the women’s team, the roles will be reversed, as Anderson will be the head coach, while Lewis serves as his assistant.

Benzwick said that this was done to allow the coaches to work fluidly with each other to build a level of cohesion and synergy between the two.

Lewis said that he is excited to be able to join a programme which he believes has a wealth of potential to become competitive on the global stage.

“Short-term goals are this weekend at the Caymans,” he said. “It’s an Olympic qualification tournament and we want the men’s team and the women’s team to move forward. Long term, we want to be consistently successful.”

The JRFU also announced a two-year partnership agreement with BLK Sport which sees the global sporting apparel company being technical kit sponsors for all its national teams.

Gregory Bryce