Johnno set for Baa-Baas role

Scott Johnson will be back coaching international rugby at the Millennium Stadium next month, as backs coach for the Barbarians.


The Ospreys Director of Coaching will link up with his opposite number at the Cardiff Blues, David Young, to prepare the Baa-Baas side taking on Wales in the capped ‘DHL Challenge’ match in Cardiff in three week’s time (Saturday 4th June, kick-off 2.30pm).

Johnson took charge of Wales for three matches in the 2006 Six Nations Championship after joining as assistant coach initially to Graham Henry and then Steve Hansen in 2004. 

He then, alongside Hansen’s successor Mike Ruddock, guided Wales to their first Grand Slam in 27 years in the 2005 Six Nations.

The Australian ended his tenure in Wales at the end of the 2006 season and was succeeded at the helm by Gareth Jenkins, but returned to face his former charges with his native Wallabies in a 20-32 Rugby World Cup 2007 victory at the Millennium Stadium.

After a spell with the USA Eagles he left international rugby and returned to Wales again to take charge of the Ospreys in 2009.

“It’s been a while since I’ve coached at the Millennium Stadium but the place is full of fantastic memories for me,” said Johnson.

“I had a great time as Wales coach and the 2005 Grand Slam has got to be the highlight of my international coaching career.

“We played just two games at home, but that final decider against Ireland was just one of those epic games and something that will stay with everyone who experienced it forever.

“The Barbarians are steeped in tradition, they come with their own style and attitude and with so many experienced international players the side would probably coach itself, but it’s an exciting prospect and a privilege to be involved.  

“I’m looking forward to meeting up with some great players who I have a huge amount of respect for.

“Facing Wales at the Millennium Stadium would be a daunting prospect for any coach or player and there are obviously going to be a few Ospreys in that Wales side as well, a few guys who I know pretty well, so it’s going to be interesting to see how the game pans out.

“Myself and Dai (Young) go back a long way too and there’s one thing that everyone in that Barbarians squad will definitely have in common, apart from the desire to entertain, and that’s going to be a pretty resolute determination to win.”