Select Edition

Northern Northern
Southern Southern
Global Global
New Zealand New Zealand
France France

Dean Richards set for return to rugby management

By Jon Newcombe
(Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

Amateur National 2 North outfit Tynedale announced today that Dean Richards will be part of an impressive coaching team for the 2024/25 season, including recently retired former Premiership and Top 14 flanker Carl Fearns.


Richards has done some coaching with the Raiders, Tynedale’s second team, over the last few months, but will now step up and play a more prominent role whilst acting as a mentor to new forwards coach, Fearns, who played under Richards during their days together at Newcastle.

Former England No.8 and Leicester and Harlequins supremo Richards led Newcastle into the Premiership play-offs for the first time in 2017/18 during a decade-long spell in charge.

The 60-year-old stepped down from his role as Director of Rugby at the Falcons in May 2022 and hasn’t been involved in any front-line rugby role since.

But Richards has strong ties with Tynedale as his three sons and daughter have all played rugby at the north-east club, based in Corbridge.

It is believed that Richards will be responsible for playing matters in an unsalaried role, including team selection and the pathway structure between the Colts and the senior teams, of which Tynedale have four, and developing future coaches from within the club’s ranks.

“It is fantastic to have someone as experienced as Dean on board, he has got a strong attachment to the club and he’ll be an asset in so many ways,” said Tynedale DoR Pete Southern.


Richards and Fearns’ arrival is complemented by that of Bill Laidlaw as skills coach, whilst Tom Wilkinson will continue to look after the backs and Southern’s off-field role will be unchanged.

Current head coach Ben Woods, the former Newcastle and Leicester flanker, has been forced to quit his role at the behest of the RFU who say that his full-time role as a rugby agent represents a conflict of interests.

Regulation 8.5.13 (g) bars any player agent from being an official, employee or contracted party at any professional/semi-professional club. Woods’ assertion that the criteria shouldn’t apply to Tynedale, given the club’s amateur status, has fallen on deaf ears at Twickenham.

Fearns, 34, is now back in the north-east of England, living 20 minutes away from the club’s ground, after hanging up his boots in December after a short spell in France’s third tier with Carcassone.




Join free



Trending on RugbyPass


As part of a series of planned improvements, we will need you to reset your RugbyPass password from 24/07/24 to continue commenting on articles.

You don’t need to change anything until that time.

Thank you,


Be the first to comment...

Join free and tell us what you really think!

Sign up for free

Latest Features

Comments on RugbyPass

Wonton 5 hours ago
Why Scott Robertson may need to ease big names aside for All Blacks' flexibility

One game against Fiji is not enough to show that a player is ready to play the likes of South Africa. Spreading the ball wide too much increases the risk of turnovers and we turned the ball over 20 times against Fiji which is a lot more than what we did in the two England tests. We actually turned the ball over the same amount of times (20) against England in the 2019 semi final which we lost. Fiji didn’t make us pay for those turnovers but other teams will. In the 2nd test against England this year we had 100% success rate on attacking rucks. That’s the first time the AB’s have achieved this since the 2019 opening game of the RWC against South Africa. South Africa won last years RWC and Jesse Kriel did not pass once. The days of the Conrad Smith type centre might be over. Also Conrad Smith debuted in 2004 but he did not become an incumbent until Nonu did also in 2008. As for Rieko Ioane he and Jordie Barrett put in some very strong midfield hits in the 2nd test forcing turnovers several times. Rieko Ioane hasn’t played wing in years. If Proctor is moved to 13 then the best I think Ioane can hope for is an impact player off the bench. He does not have the aerial game of Caleb Clarke or the workrate of Tele’a for 11 and going to be selected over Jordan at 14. However its much too early to replace Rieko with Proctor. Rieko was excellent in the knock out rounds of the RWC. All Proctor has to show on his test CV is a good game against Fiji.

22 Go to comments
Nick 6 hours ago
How 'gazelle' Nick Frost thawed the hearts of Wallaby fans at Suncorp

Its almost like you read my comment on the other site on sunday morning Nick - you flagged all the same examples! 😝 Frost was motm for mine. That eg in the 56th minute in particular impressed me, nothing but sheer effort and a dupont/smith-like tracking line behind the D. Surely an effort like that from frost marries perfectly with that quote from schmidt at the start of the year about effort and work rate being 70-80% and talent is just the icing on top… What it also showed though was the players not making that effort, in that example he goes past both valetini and ikitau, and in the eg that finished with valetini scoring hunter paisami barely breaks a canter to support the break. And then there was the chase from wright and lancaster for the 2nd georgian try! One blemish - at kickoff I saw frost miss or get bumped off a few tackles and I felt like I saw what has been holding his selection back. I think because he is so big and is trying to get low to tackle, he seems to dip his head and ends up losing his balance or ability to adjust and ends up missing or making a soft hit. I think in the first 2 minutes he misses or makes 2-3 soft tackles, but you could clearly see the work rate and desire! He (the pod) also missed a kick restart or two? Also very happy to see harry wilson back in the fold. What impressed me from him wasn’t all the usual stuff he is known for, but all the other bits that usually let him down. He looked surprisingly good in the air at lineout time, physical at the breakdown, and good in the maul peeling off 3 georgians for one of the maul tries. Id have frost, skelton, wright as my 4-6 with LSL and wilson on the bench. i’m once again unconvinced by tom wirght - he was very good game 1, but game 2-3 he was back to more rocks than diamonds. There is no real other player to usurp him really so he stays in the team for now but I think Joe should put kellaway wherever he serves the team best and wright can be moved around him. Did donno do enough to overtake noah? My gut says no. They clearly had a plan to attack more so he looked better in that regard because he just had more opportunity, but they looked better off tate (who had a v good game also) then they did off donno.

17 Go to comments
FEATURE Japan embrace chaos theory in bid for Olympic surprise Japan embrace chaos theory in bid for Olympic surprise