Harlequins head of rugby delighted to have Sean Long on board

Harlequins head of rugby Paul Gustard
Harlequins head of rugby Paul Gustard
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Sean Long would never deny that he had a Jack-the-lad image during an illustrious trophy-filled career at St Helens.

Even in his 2010 autobiography, the 42-year-old three times Lance Trophy winner said - and I quote:''People have been asking me to calm down all my life and I just can't.

''I love it when things are a bit mental.''

Nearly a decade has elapsed since the book, which told tales of booze, brawls, sex and scandal, was first published but now a far more mature, knowledgeable and experienced sporting legend will face arguably his toughest test as a member of the coaching staff at Harlequins - founded in 1866 and one of the most famous RU clubs in the world.

Long joins a club which finished fifth in the Gallagher-sponsored Premiership title race last month but will no doubt be hoping to play a major role in helping to bring the championship trophy to the Twickenham Stoop sooner rather than later.

He will work with a talented Quins' backroom team, which includes head of rugby Paul Gustard, who is delighted to have the ex-Saint on board

Gustard said: “I have been looking at adding a coach to assist with some of the finer detail around running lines and creating numerical advantages for some time now and I am delighted that Sean has decided to join Quins ahead of other Premiership options as he takes his first foray into coaching union.

“From an early age, rugby league players have core skill acquisition ingrained in their developmental pathway.

''The skill fundamentals of catch pass, tackling and running lines take precedence over what shape your team plays and they are the key and critical transferable skills which are required in union.

“As a player, Sean was a stand-out among his peers and perhaps his greatest strength, despite all his talent, is his competitive desire.

''We can see with the performance of St Helens this year the impact he is now having as a coach with their attack as they compete at the top of Super League and enter into the semi-finals of the Challenge Cup after a 40-point thrashing over Wakefield.

“We welcome Longy and his partner, Sally-Ann, to Harlequins and look forward to the contribution he will make as we look to build on last season’s improvements.”

Footnote: The town of Wigan has a great record in producing top class RL players who go on to play and coach at 15-a-side level..

Over the past couple of decades sons of Wigan like of Andy Farrell, Shaun Edwards, Joe Lydon and now Long have been lured to what some people call 'the kick and clap game.'

Who will be next?