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Foley to leave Bath for Australia



Originally posted by BBC SPORT
Bath forwards coach Michael Foley has been appointed assistant coach of the Australian national team.

The 38-year-old has signed a three-year deal and will team up again with former Bath boss John Connolly, who took over as Australia coach last year.

"I've worked with John as a player and recently as a coach and we complement each other well," said Foley.

Foley, who was in the 1999 World Cup-winning squad, will join Australia for the game with England in 10 June.

The former hooker, who joined Bath in 2001 as assistant to Jon Callard, admitted he was sad to leave the club but said the offer of returning home to work with Connolly was too good to miss.

Connolly took over from Eddie Jones after Australia's worst losing streak in more than 30 years but Foley believes there are signs of recovery in the national game.

"The Wallaby forwards came under plenty of scrutiny last year but already in Super 14 we've seen players and packs improve remarkably," said Foley, who won 50 international caps.

"That's not to say there isn't room for further improvement but the early signs are pleasing."

Connolly said he was looking forward to having Foley as part of his coaching team.

"Michael is a very good young coach with plenty of experience and technical knowledge," Connolly added.

"He has a strong vision for how we want to play the game and how we need to move forward this season, as well as looking ahead to the World Cup next year."

Bath have previously said they would demand compensation from the Australian Rugby Union if Foley left.

Will be a shame to see him go but maybe its time for a revolution at Bath, and Brian Ashton to bring in his own people now... I cant blame Foley if your country comes calling your gonna jump at the chance, especially with the World Cup next year...
No great surprise. We've all known that for a while, long before Connolly got the top job. We should get a decent amount of compensation from the ARU as he's got a year left.

It just gives Ashton the chance to pick his own coaching team now. Foley's done a brilliant job with our forwards, so we need to find someone to carry on his work. Somebody like Martin Haag, who's forwards coach at Bristol, or Nigel Redman would fit the bill.

The Bath website obviously isn't too fussed with this story. They're too busy promoting a candidate for Miss Bath 2006, a far more interesting story.
No. Connolly leaving and Ashton coming in did that. We more than played our part at the weekend with Foley in charge of the forwards.
Originally posted by loratadine@Mar 7 2006, 10:33 PM
much better story - its makes bath a little less boring
Fairly sure we beat your lot at home even when we were being boring.... B)

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