Family first for national Sevens coach

THE Australian Rugby Union will launch a global search for a new Sevens head coach after the shock resignation of its coaching director Geraint John for family reasons.

With his wife working in Canada, and his daughter attending University in Britain, John informed the ARU it was time to put his family first, saying he could not continue through to Rio late next year.

ALL OVER: Geraint John.
ALL OVER: Geraint John.

Despite assurances from the ARU that John's decision to return home to Britain to be with his wife and family would not impact on Australia's quest for gold at next year's Rio Olympics, the timing is not great a year out from the Games.

Australia will need to win the Oceania qualifying tournament in November to get to Rio after narrowly missing out when fifth on the HSBC Sevens World Series table.

National women's coach Tim Walsh will take over the men's program until a new coach is appointed, hopefully well before the Oceania tournament to give the successful candidate time to familiarise themselves with the system.

John was appointed Sevens director and men's head coach in June last year after he spent four years in charge of the Canadian men's team. He guided Australia to a bronze medal at last year's Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

Wallabies World Cup squad members Quade Cooper and Henry Speight recently re-committed to the ARU on the basis they would have the chance to be part of Australia's squad for the Olympics. It is understood Israel Folau was also keen to join them in Rio.

ARU general manager Ben Whittaker said: "While obviously we are sad to lose Geraint, we respect his decision entirely."

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

KAKADU CALLING: Wildlife guide finds feet after loss of ear

FIRM FOOTING: With sights set on a new career Kakadu national park, Emma Walton has found a new direction in life after recovering from Meniere's disease, which destroyed her inner ear.

Warwick woman's sights set on nature after loss of inner ear.

NO END TO NEGATIVITY: Millennials carry conflict everywhere

Warwick teenagers Jack Kearns and Jakob Miklejohn speak about the benefits they got from the Young Leaders program, mental health, social media and what young people need. Two teenage boys pictured at Warwick skate park holding mobile phones, youth engagement.

Young Warwick leader says no escape from conflict in digital age

Hospital recognised as best practice

Prof Paul Worley on his recent visit to Stanthorpe Hospital

Stanthorpe a role model for rural generalists

Local Partners