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Anthony Seibold to return to Australia

8th October 2010, 10:12

Anthony Seibold to return to Australia

South Wales Scorpions will be looking for a new head coach for 2011 as Anthony Seibold has decided to return to Australia for family reasons.

South Wales Scorpions will be looking for a new head coach for 2011 as Anthony Seibold has decided to return to Australia for family reasons.

Seibold led the Scorpions to the Co-operative Championship 1 play-offs in their first season in Rugby League and has been responsible for the Rugby League development of many Welsh youngsters of all ages both at the Scorpions and in the growing Wales Rugby League academy system that he helped to set up and develop.

All of this success helped him to win the 2010 Co-operative Championship 1 Coach of the Year award which was presented to him last month.

He has been offered a job in Queensland for 2011 as Head Coach of Mackay Cutters, the feeder club to North Queensland Cowboys in the NRL, and has accepted.

He will return on November 6th following his commitments as assistant coach with Wales in their Alitalia European Cup campaign and his final coaching job at his home ground at the Scorpions' home ground at The Gnoll in Neath will be on Sunday 17th October when Wales take on Ireland (kick-off 2pm).

He will also resign from his position as "Head of Football" for Wales Rugby League following the tournament.

Phil Davies, chairman of South Wales Scorpions has thanked Seibold for his excellent work throughout 2011.

"When we launched the Scorpions in December 2009, we had no head coach, no players and no staff," he said. "And when Seibs came along to head up the first open trial session in January this year with his enthusiasm, knowledge of the game and a desire to continue to develop Rugby League in South Wales, we knew instantly that he was the man for the job.

"Naturally I am disappointed to see him go but I perfectly understand his reasons. It has been a pleasure to work with him, I wish him all the best and I hope our paths cross again in the not too distant future.

"We will have a send-off for him before he leaves but I do encourage everyone to come to The Gnoll on Sunday 17th October when Wales take on Ireland in the European Cup as this will be his last coaching job at the ground that he loves. Please give him and Wales all of your support that day as he assists Iestyn Harris.

"This season at the Scorpions, we have fielded 24 born and bred Welsh players and much of this is down to Seibs in his roles at Crusaders, Wales and the Scorpions. Out of those 24, 11 played for Wales against Italy in Wrexham which was a fantastic achievement. It shows how well Rugby League is developing in Wales and a lot of that has been down to Seibs. We're sorry to see him go and we all wish him every success in his new position as Head Coach of Mackay Cutters in the Queensland Cup."

Sash Stosic, General Manager for Wales Rugby League said: "I'd like to thank Anthony for everything that he's done for Rugby League in Wales over the years that he has been in Wales.

"This year, in his time of employment with Wales Rugby League, his efforts have been outstanding in regards to coaching players from senior to all junior levels and for setting up the player pathways in Wales that I'm certain will be in place for many years to come. He's achieved great things in such a short time.

"Wales Rugby League are disappointed to see him go but we are 100% supportive of his decision, his family and his career."

Anthony Seibold has released the following statement:

"It is with a great amount of sadness that for family reasons I will be returning to Australia next month," he said.

"It has been a very tough decision as I have loved every minute of this season working with the Scorpions' players and staff. I have also been really honoured to be involved with Wales Rugby League as Head of Football in 2010 and as assistant to Iestyn Harris with the National team. My commitments with Wales will finish after the Alitalia European Cup series and I hope to go out as a winner.

"I have had eight of the past 12 years firstly playing and more recently coaching at every level of the professional game in the UK. I have been at London Broncos, Hull Kingston Rovers, Crusaders and this year at South Wales Scorpions. I am proud and very content with my input and commitment to the game in the UK in this time and have shown that I care about the development of the game here as an overseas player and coach.

"It has been a great life experience and I have enjoyed my time here immensely. I take home some terrific memories of my time at all four clubs but it is time to take the kids home closer to my parents and our family.

"I have been given the opportunity to continue my coaching career in Australia as Head Coach of Mackay Cutters in the Queensland Cup and this gives me a terrific opportunity to further my coaching education back home. The Queensland Cup is the highest standard competition outside the NRL and is somewhere between Championship and Super League. I feel that it is the next step in my coaching development and it will be a big challenge.

"I have no hesitation in saying that my ambition in the future is to come back and coach at Super League level as a Head Coach and feel this position would give me a further opportunity to allow me to develop as a coach. It also allows me to spend time closer to and with my family in Central Queensland for the short term and they have to be my priority at present.

"I cannot thank Phil Davies, Chairman of the South Wales Scorpions enough for his faith, support, friendship and enthusiasm this year.

"I was in a really dark place with regards to Rugby League after the way that the staff and players were treated at the Crusaders by the former Chairman and CEO in South Wales at the back end of 2009. After the relocation to Wrexham and with the arrival of new owners and coaching staff, I was still not enjoying my time at the club any more and Phil gave me a wonderful opportunity back down in South Wales.

"Mark Rowley, Rob Buckley and John Brennan were also terrific in their support this year and I cannot thank them enough for their friendship. There are so many great people involved at Wales Rugby League and at the Scorpions and I have appreciated all their support. The players and coaching staff in Dan Clements, Hywel Davies and Ian Gibbons have been immense and we all really bought into creating a great Rugby League culture down here in South Wales - I will miss them all.

"I hope that I have repaid the Scorpions and Wales Rugby League's faith in me and I am really proud of taking the Scorpions to the play offs in the our first season as a club and winning the Championship One Coach of the Year award. No one can ever take that away from us and I hope to see the Scorpions continue on an upward spiral. To give debuts to 24 born and bred Welshman at the Scorpions this year was awesome for the development of the game.

"There is so much talent here in South Wales and with the support of the RFL, Wales Rugby League will continue to thrive. One of the most pleasing things in all my time here in Wales, and it really does sum up my experience and the success that Rugby League has had since 2006, is that at training for the Welsh National team this week in Wrexham, that of the 34 players training, 24 were Welsh born and bred. In 2005, I am told that not one professional player in the squad was born and bred in Wales, although there were a few who played for clubs in the Welsh Conference. If supporters of the game and others cannot see that this is progress, then they are really are blinkered. If that is not deemed a success then I don't know what is? It really makes all the sacrifices we have made in Wales worthwhile."