Bridgend's Young gaining LV= Cup coaching

The Ospreys return to the Riverside Hardware Brewery Field this weekend when they play Aviva Premiership giants Harlequins in an LV= Cup clash on Sunday afternoon, and for one young coach on the sidelines, the match will represent the next step on the development pathway.

Paul Young, Forwards Coach at Bridgend Ravens, will spend the weekend shadowing his Ospreys counterpart Jonathan Humphreys, the second consecutive Ospreys fixture where he has enjoyed unrestricted access to the senior set-up at the region.

Swansea born Young, who was a hooker for Cardiff and Newport in the pre-regional era and then played for Newport Gwent Dragons, gaining one Welsh cap, joined the Ravens last summer on the back of seven years experience as a professional rugby coach, including time as Forwards Coach with Wales U16s.

Now he is joining his Bridgend Ravens colleague, Dan Griffiths, in being handed an opportunity by the Ospreys to be a part of the LV= Cup management team, with his focus being on analysis and match preparation.

Coming into the group around matchday to shadow Humphreys and the rest of the coaching team on the day of the match, Young’s activity sees him being present at the pre-match player briefing, half-time and post-match in the dressing room as well sitting with the coaching team during the tie itself to witness the extent of the ‘in-game’ analysis that is carried out.

This is followed up by sitting in on the post-match review meeting the day after the game, where the coaches carry out an in-depth inquest into what went right and wrong on the pitch, before having access to player debriefs.

“It’s the opportunity that I wanted, and I’m grateful to get this opportunity” said Young.

“As a coach, I’m benefiting from the knowledge and experience of the Ospreys management.

“With many Ospreys players at the Ravens it is paramount that what and how we coach compliments and reflects the Ospreys style of play. Continuity for players helps with a smooth transition between the two teams.”

Having joined the Ravens ahead of the current season, 40-year old Young admits the development pathways in place throughout Ospreylia had strongly influenced his decision.

“It was a huge attraction to me to be honest” said Young.

“I’ve been impressed by the way they look after player and coach development. Those pathways are clear for everybody to see, the Ospreys really buy into developing from within and that’s why I was delighted to join Bridgend.”

Linking up with Humphreys again at the Ospreys means that the pair are rekindling an old friendship having both been part of Cardiff’s squad in the nineties, and Young says he’s learning a lot from his former colleague.

“We got on well playing at Cardiff together and he’s been coaching at this level for a while now. It's great to shadow Humph and the other coaches, not only for my own development but the future success of the Ravens and future Ospreys players. Working with the region it's clear to see that Bridgend Ravens is a great place to be for coaches and players who have regional aspirations”