FORMER Great Britain rugby league star Billy McGinty has joined Malvern’s coaching staff as preparations begin at Spring Lane ahead of next season.
McGinty is set to bring a wealth of experience to the Midlands Two West (South) outfit having had an illustrious career playing rugby league for Warrington and Wigan in the 1990s.
He then switched codes to play for Sale before embarking on a coaching career which included spells at Edinburgh and ten years at Worcester Warriors.
McGinty, who is an expert in conditioning and defence, also ran most of Malvern’s first training session last week, which saw 38 players attend.
Newly appointed director of rugby Dave Irish said the turnout gave him ‘great hope’ for next season as he looks to rebuild the club which has suffered two successive relegations.
“We want to bring back the enthusiasm for the sport at Malvern,” he said.
“Some of which was inevitably lost over the last two difficult years, and the first step is to make training an enjoyable time to work hard but then socialise afterwards at the club.
“Despite relegation, there are many good things within the team on which we can build for the future, and tonight’s first session was a good start.”
Gloucester full back Rob Cook has left Malvern’s backroom staff, but Irish confirmed head coach Nick Tisdale will remain in place while former skipper Vince Hill has return to the club to oversee their Development XV side.
Hill guided the previous year’s u17 team to league honours and played in the same Malvern side as Irish which went up through the league system.
“Vince and I have 25 years worth of Malvern experience and have the club in our psyche,” Irish added.
“I also hope to bring in some of the other team members from our era to assist in the development and growth of the club as we consolidate our position.
“We then want to grow the playing strength using our vibrant youth section as the basis of a truly local club. Nick Tisdale will still be available to us when his teaching duties allow and we will also be using his county-wide knowledge if we need to recruit.
“Sadly, Rob Cook’s new contract at Gloucester has meant that he is no longer able to undertake coaching duties at Malvern, but he has promised to turn up whenever possible on an ad hoc basis, such is his fondness for the club.”