FOLLOWING a series of new player arrivals, Gloucester Rugby are delighted to announce a significant addition to the coaching staff for next season with the appointment of Carl Hogg as Academy Manager.
The former Scotland international is currently Assistant Coach of Edinburgh Gunners and will be responsible for ensuring the development of the brightest talent from Gloucester's renowned Academy into the senior 1st XV.
Former graduates of the Gloucester Academy who are now firmly established at both club and international level include James Simpson-Daniel, James Forrester, Andy Hazell, Adam Eustace, Ryan Lamb, Olly Morgan, Mark Foster, Rob Elloway and Jack Forster.
Hogg, 36, has previously held coaching roles with Leeds Tykes and London Welsh, and will also take on an active senior role alongside Dean Ryan with the development of Gloucester's forwards.
"Carl was the standout candidate from the application process and we are delighted to have him on board," head coach Dean Ryan told www.gloucesterrugby.co.uk.
"Youngsters such as Jack Forster and Olly Morgan who have established themselves in the 1st XV this season demonstrate the critical role the Academy plays, and having somebody of Carl's pedigree overseeing it is of huge importance to us."
Following last week's announcement that Assistant Coach Bryan Redpath and Mike Anthony, Head Fitness Coach, have signed contract extensions until 2009, Hogg's arrival completes the senior management setup for next season alongside Head Coach Dean Ryan and Denis Betts, Skills Coach.
"Gloucester is a massive rugby club and I'm so excited to be moving south to join them," said Hogg.
"My experiences as a player, with the academy at Leeds and more recently with the senior squad at Edinburgh have given me an excellent understanding of what it takes for a young player to progress to a senior squad and I'm really looking forward to the challenge of continuing to develop world-class talent at Gloucester."
Fly-half Billy Burns was named Man of the Match after the 35-14 European Rugby Challenge Cup victory over Stade Rochelais on Thursday evening, and was full of praise for all his team mates for the win after a short turnaround.
Gloucester have been in good form in recent weeks, but Backs Coach Tim Taylor knows that the Cherry and Whites will have to be at their best on Thursday evening (kick off 7:45pm) against a Stade Rochelais side flying high this season.
Speaking to GRTV after the bonus point win over Bristol, back row Lewis Ludlow revealed that despite a tricky first half, Gloucester backed their skills to come through, a faith that was evident in a strong second half showing.
Willi Heinz scored Gloucester's second try as the Cherry and Whites overturned a disappointing first 40 minutes and 0-6 half time deficit, to earn a 26-18 Aviva Premiership victory over Bristol Rugby on Saturday.
Gloucester's much changed side had to overcome conceding an early try on Thursday evening, but responded in style to down Stade Rochelais by 35 points to 14 in the European Rugby Challenge Cup and set up a mouthwatering return fixture next weekend.
After taking 11 points from their last three games in the Aviva Premiership, including bonus point wins against Wasps and Bristol, Gloucester will be looking to continue their good form when they welcome La Rochelle to Kingsholm.