UAE

Winston Cowie appointed as Abu Dhabi Saracens head coach

Matt Jones - Editor 02:04 12/07/2016
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No nonsense: Winston Cowie

Winston Cowie has been named the new head coach of Abu Dhabi Saracens, with the New Zealander taking over from joint player coaches Stephen Hamilton and Craig Nutt.

The duo took charge at Al Ghazal last June when West Asia Cupwinning coach Ali Thompson stepped down. Englishman Hamilton and Wales’ Nutt will both remain at the club as players as well as assisting Cowie off the field too.

Sarries chairman Jay Danielson is excited that the club has been able to appoint Cowie, 33, a former Doha captain who has also previously worked as a forwards coach at Abu Dhabi rivals Harlequins.

“I’m very excited about Winston joining us, he is a no-nonsense bloke who will bring some structure to the team and really help develop our younger players and bring out the best in our established guys,” said the Australian.

“Steve and Craig did a terrific job, they took on the roles at short notice and really helped steer the ship in our transitional year with a new management structure. They are 100 per cent behind the appointment of a traditional head coach role. They will also be part of a senior leadership team to assist Winston where they can.”

Hamilton and Nutt enjoyed a steady season despite juggling coaching and playing. Although they could not emulate the success of 2014/15 when Sarries famously won the West Asia Cup, it was still a respectable campaign. They finished fourth in the West Asia Championship after a disastrous start and also finished third in the UAE Premiership.

“We are all looking forward to working with Winston and we will continue to help wherever he needs us,” said Nutt. “I am looking forward to going back to playing, having a good year and helping the team wherever I can.”

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