June 11, 2017
The Fiji Rugby Union has appointed Australian dual code champion Peter Ryan as the Defence Coach of the Vodafone Flying Fijians.
FRU Chief Executive, Mr John O’Connor says they are grateful to engage Ryan who is a well-known professional in his field and will contribute positively towards the Vodafone Flying Fijians in their 2019 World Cup campaign.
“The FRU welcomes Ryan into the Fiji Rugby family and looks forward to his specialised contribution towards the enhancement of the Elite Teams’ Defence codes which we are confident will lead to improved performances through the rugby structures in Fiji.”
Rugby union and rugby league cross-code pioneer Peter Ryan is a former Brumbies championship winner and Brisbane Broncos premiership player.
He is currently the Defence Coach for the Brumbies, and has agreed to join McKee’s coaching staff for Test assemblies and tours.
Ryan was the first player to win grand finals in both the NRL and Super Rugby, and along with Brad Thorn, he is one of the few League forwards to successfully make a transition to Union.
Described by Melbourne Storm coach Craig Bellamy as "one of the most devastating defenders" in rugby league, Ryan played for the Broncos from 1989 to 1999.
He switched codes to join the Brumbies and won a Super Rugby title in 2001, before finishing his playing career in Japan.
Coach McKee said that Ryan will take charge of the collision zone and fine-tune the Vodafone Flying Fijians breakdown work and tackling techniques.
He said Ryan’s appointment, on top of the addition of S & C Coaches Damian Marsh an John Pryor, will play a vital role in the team’s preparations for the June and July tests, as all three are world class in their roles.
“The 3 new technical coaches will make invaluable contributions to the Vodafone Flying Fijians World Cup campaign given their success in their respective roles with their former teams, which cannot be underestimated.”
“The magnitude of their qualifications and experience is a massive advantage for us and their coaching credentials and achievements speak for themselves” McKee added.
Ryan joined the Vodafone Flying Fijians in Melbourne and has been training the team since then.
By Reginald Chandar