Sheffield RUFC goes international with new head coach appointment as Croatia chief Anthony Posa joins
A Sheffield rugby club plying their trade in the fifth tier has pulled off quite the coup with the appointment of their new head coach.
Croatia national rugby union team chief Anthony Posa has been confirmed as the new man in charge of Midlands Premier side Sheffield RUFC after Adam Byron departed for Rotherham Titans – one of Posa’s former clubs - of the league above last month.
New Zealand-born Posa, who is a second generation Croat, had been in charge of Yorkshire Three outfit Barnsley and leaves them top of the league with 12 wins from 12 this season.
He has been involved in the national team set-up for seven years and has spent the last four years coaching the Sevens side. Doncaster-based Posa took over the reigns of the European tier 3 XVs team – ranked forty-fifth in the world - this year.
“We are really excited to have him,” Sheffield RUFC chairman Andrew Langdale said.
"He’s a very committed rugby man and will be brilliant for us.”
Posa, who is also director of rugby at the University of Sheffield, previously set up the Doncaster Knights Academy and earned four promotions in four years while in charge of Beverley.
As a player he represented his country on more than 50 occasions, including in World Cup qualifiers, and played semi-professionally in Scotland.
Posa told The Star: "Sheffield is a match made in heaven really because the University needs someone to have a link with and the club needs one, so hopefully it works out.
"I left Barnsley unbeaten and they are top of the league. Hopefully they can finish the job without me. They always knew it was when I go, not if.”
On his experience with Croatia, Posa added: “It’s been awesome. You see the world through places you would never dream of going to.”
The new head coach has been tasked with leading fourth-placed Sheffield to promotion this season and helping the club survive and consolidate in National League 2 North.
He said: “My main aim is to maintain the good work Adam’s done before me and hopefully add my style and improve matters.
“I have had a few promotions, I know what it takes; it’s a long process but if you put in the hard work you will enjoy it."