Plus500 Brumbies Assistant Coach Peter Hewat has been named as the new Australian Schools & U18s Head coach for 2019.
The former NSW Waratahs back played over 150 matches which also included stints at London Irish and Suntory and was the Waratahs second highest points scorer with 636 points, winning the 2017 Top League Premiership whilst in Japan.
Hewat will be joined by two assistant coaches who will come from within the school system.
The Australian Schools Rugby Union will present a short list of these coaches to Rugby Australia before a final decision is made.
The role will see Hewat work alongside the Head of National Talent Management and State Academy staff in the process of finalising the touring squad.
“I’m really looking forward to taking on the coaching role of Australian Schools & U18s for 2019," Hewat said of his appointment.
“This is an exciting time for the Rugby Australia pathway with our academies, schools and clubs having greater alignment and I’m looking forward to working with the players and my fellow coaches to develop our next generation of talent.“
We are looking forward to the fixtures later in the season, but in the meantime, I remain fully focused on my role at the Brumbies and helping the club towards a successful Super Rugby season.”
The academy programs are designed to enable all participants to achieve their Rugby goals, without hindering their club or school Rugby commitments.The academies will also ensure that school leavers who are eligible to play U18s Rugby can represent their country.
Following a series of academy fixtures, an Australian Schools and U18s side will be picked continuing in the tradition of National fixtures against Fiji U18 Schools, New Zealand School Barbarians and New Zealand Schools.
Rugby Australia’s National Head of Talent Management, Adrian Thompson said: “We are happy to have Peter involved in the first year of our new structure. He’s a proven himself both as a player and a coach and this opportunity allows him to gain some Head Coaching experience.
“We would like to thank the Brumbies who are supporting this venture. It’s an excellent opportunity to give a Super Rugby coach the chance to guide a National under age team.
“Our Academies will feed into the Australian Schools and U18s program which will allow for a better-connected pathway through to the Junior Wallabies and Super Rugby clubs.”
U18 Academy Fixtures:
Brumbies v Rebels, March 3, Seiffert Oval
Rebels v Reds, June 30, Brimbank Rugby Club
Force v NSW JRU 18s, July 6, UWA
Rebels v Force, July 19, Brimbank Rugby Club
Brumbies v Force, July 21, Albury
Waratahs v Brumbies, September 15, Waratah Headquarters
Reds v Waratahs, September 22, Ballymore
Australian Schools and U18 fixtures (final squad announced on Sunday September 22)
Australian Schools & 18s v Fiji Schools, September 26, Hamilton NZ
Australian Schools & 18s v NZ Schools Barbarians, September 30, Hamilton NZ
Australian Schools & 18s v New Zealand Schools, October 4, Hamilton NZ