Former North Midlands head coach Scott Bemand and Matt Ferguson, a former Rugby Development Officer in North Midlands, have been appointed to the roles of England Women’s XVs Lead Coach and Assistant Coach respectively.
Former England and Premiership scrum-half Bemand and Premiership coach Ferguson will report directly to Simon Middleton who was named overall Head Coach of both the XVs and Sevens international programmes in February. With Susie Appleby continuing her role as Sevens consultancy coach, the appointments complete an all-new coaching line-up for the 2014 Rugby World Cup champions.
Bemand and Ferguson will start their new roles on May 28 ahead of England’s summer tour to Canada. England will take on the host nation as well as New Zealand and the USA over three Tests in June and July as part of the Rugby Super Series in Alberta.
Bemand joins the England set-up with an illustrious playing career behind him. The 36-year-old from Dorset has run out for Bath, Harlequins, Leicester and England before taking up coaching roles for Luctonians RFC, North Midlands, England Men Under 18s and most recently Loughborough Students.
Former Ludlow and Stourbridge prop Ferguson most recently was assistant and forwards coach at London Welsh and before that forwards coach at Cardiff Blues and Championship side Bristol. Ferguson has also been involved with the England Women’s set-up previously as forwards coach for the England A team between 2009 and 2011.
Bemand said: “This is a really exciting opportunity to work with the reigning world champions and one I am thrilled about. With the sevens in the Olympics in 2016 and England set to defend their world cup crown in 2017, this is a hugely significant period for England Women and women’s rugby as a whole, and certainly an opportunity that was just too good to miss.”
Ferguson added: “I am honoured to have the opportunity to build on the successful England’s women’s rugby programme which saw the team crowned world champions in 2014. We have a very a talented and exciting group of players, many of who I have worked with previously, and I am really looking forward to teaming up with them again.”