Dwayne Peel is set to swap Ulster for Cardiff Blues after the Welsh region confirmed the former Wales international will join their coaching team for the 2021-22 season. Peel has agreed to join the Blues on a long-term contract as Senior Assistant Coach responsible for attack, and will make the move next summer ahead of the 2021-22 season.

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Peel spent two seasons as skills and attack coach at Bristol Bears before joining Ulster as an assistant coach in 2017.

He is now in his fourth season in Northern Ireland and Ulster are currently unbeaten in Conference A of the Guinness PRO14, having scored more tries than any other side in the Championship with an average of 5.1 tries per game.

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The 39-year-old said: “I am really excited to come back to Wales with this opportunity at Cardiff Blues, which was impossible to turn down.

“I have really enjoyed my time with Ulster Rugby and remain incredibly grateful to everyone at the Kingspan Stadium. I feel like I have made a good contribution in Ulster and we have developed an attractive, all round style of play.

“But to come back home to Wales and play a part in developing the next generation of players is really exciting. Cardiff Blues have a wealth of young attacking talent and enormous potential.

“I remain full committed to Ulster for the remainder of the season and I’m determined to leave with success before joining Cardiff Blues.”

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Peel won 76 Wales caps in an illustrious playing career, playing a key role in two Grand Slams, and started three Tests for the British & Irish Lions in 2005.

Cardiff head coach John Mulvihill is hoping Peel can take the Blues’ attacking game to the next level.

“We’re all really looking forward to welcoming Dwayne to our coaching group,” Mulvihill said.

“He brings enormous experience as a player at the top level and has already transferred much of that to become a top quality coach.

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“While we have a huge amount of attacking talent in our squad, we need to take our attacking play to the next level and I am confident Dwayne will help us achieve this and realise our potential.

“I have been very impressed with his overall attacking philosophy and how he plans to get the best out of our players.

“He’s had an excellent run at Ulster over the past four seasons and his record there attests to his coaching ability. Dwyane’s role as a senior coach within our program will focus primarily on our attacking framework and the strategy and delivery of this both on and off the field. Richie Rees will continue as our backs coach and work closely with Dwayne to deliver world best practice to our backline.

“We are building upon a solid base of Welsh coaches here at Cardiff Blues and Dwayne’s appointment further imbeds our cultural identity and values. We welcome him into our family and I’m sure that we will all benefit from his knowledge, enthusiasm and commitment.”

Peel added that the opportunity to join Cardiff arrived at the right time for him.

“This is my fourth season at Ulster, and it’s been an awesome experience for me. It has been a great privilege to coach this Ulster team.

“It was always in my plans to go back and coach in Welsh rugby at some point in my career, and I feel this opportunity has come around at the right time for me and my family.

“We’ve still got six months to go until the end of the season however, and my full focus and commitment remains on being successful with Ulster.”

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