The Welsh Rugby Union.have appointed John Schropfer as national coach development manager tasked with creating a new strategy to improve coaching standards across the board in Wales.
Schropfer will take up his new role immediately as part of the ongoing restructuring of the rugby development operation within the WRU. The new post is a key appointment which spans both the elite and community game to unify the coach development pathway for the future.
More appointments are in the pipeline within the coach development structure which is now being put in place.
Schropfer has been promoted from his current role of WRU community rugby coach education manager to take up the new post. He will report to the yet to be appointed head of rugby development which is now a WRU executive board level appointment.
The new structure below the head of rugby development includes the national match officials manager, Rob Yeman, the national performance manager, Huw Wiltshire, the national coach development manager and the yet to be appointed national rugby development manager.
The new national coach development manager will immediately start work on delivering an overall strategy for Wales which creates more first class coaches at all levels. A core aim will be to boost the number of Welsh coaches capable of operating at international level in Wales.
Schropfer has worked for the Welsh Rugby Union for 17 years as an international coach, a development officer, a community manager and heading up the community coach education division. He is an IRB licensed trainer of coach educators and his hands on coaching experience includes coaching Wales at senior level as assistant coach to Kevin Bowring and coaching age grade international sides at schools and youth levels.
Schropfer said: "My mission is to create the world's most respected rugby coaching system that delivers coaches who are fit for purpose in sufficient numbers at all levels and delivers the right coach to the right place at the right time for the needs of every player at every stage of their development.
"Part of my focus will be to develop a workforce with the technical skills to create more players with better skills. In essence that means better coach educators and better trainers.
"If we have more and better coaches across the spectrum we will ultimately ensure that more talented players progress along the development pathway which will ultimately deliver the best talent to the national squad.
"After all, the main aim is to ensure we get more players achieving their full potential to give the national coaches more choice in selection. We can move towards achieving that if we have excellent coaches at all levels.
"The strategy will also help us create coaches capable of competing at the top of the pyramid for the ultimate prize which is to coach Wales. I believe we already have a lot of very good coaches but we need more and we need enough to create a bigger pool of talented players.
"I already have a five year strategy plan in place and we are moving along the road in delivering the resources at levels one, two, three and four."
Wales' acting head coach Rob Howley has given Sam Davies and Rory Thornton a boost ahead of the RBS 6 Nations by naming the uncapped Ospreys duo in his largely experienced squad for the Autumn Internationals.