LONDON IRISH stalwart Declan Danaher will combine playing with coaching this season as he joins the London Irish Academy coaching team.
Danaher – who is currently in his 14th pre-season campaign with the Exiles – will work with players in both the London Irish AASE group and EPDG programme.
The 33-year-old has worn the London Irish jersey on 261 occasions, second only to Justin Bishop.
The Exiles will be hoping that he can use his vast knowledge and experience of the game to help develop the next generation of London Irish stars.
Danaher who represented Ireland at U19 level said: “I’m really happy that Brian Smith has offered me the chance to work with the Academy.
“The London Irish development system has been hugely successful in recent years, producing players that have gone on to play at the highest level, so to have the chance to help out the future players of this club will be a great challenge and I am looking forward to it.
“Representing London Irish has always been a huge honour and I will continue to work hard to ensure I am in the mix for selection.”
Director of Rugby Brian Smith believes Danaher has the capabilities to be an outstanding coach.
He said: “This club has been a huge part of Dec’s life for the last 14 years and it is great he will be able to pass on his experience to the next crop of emerging players.
“He epitomises what London Irish is about and there is no better person to explain to these young lads what it means to play for our club.”