October 16, 2021
Former Fiji 7s Coach Gareth Baber has been appointed the new Skills and Assistant Attack Coach of Scottish professional club Edinburgh.
Speaking after his appointment, the Welshman said he is very much looking forward to the challenges and opportunities which come with his new coaching role with Edinburgh.
“I am extremely grateful to Mike [Blair] and the Edinburgh backroom team for the faith they have shown in my recruitment and I’m determined to repay them,” he told the club’s website.
“The prospect of joining an innovative and knowledgeable coaching staff at a top European team, which has in its ranks some of the best rugby talent in world rugby, excites me enormously.”
“I look forward to adding value to the group, utilising my own rugby knowledge and coaching experiences.”
He said having played and coached against Edinburgh during his career, he is aware of what the team represents and the depth of passion felt in the city for the success of the team.
“It is a great opportunity to challenge myself in an established professional environment, where I recognise that I will need to be at the top of my coaching abilities.
Having studied at both Swansea University and Oxford University, Baber – who played scrum-half and wing – enjoyed a highly respected professional playing career, representing Cardiff RFC, Pontypridd RFC, Aberavon RFC, Bristol and Dragons, before switching his focus to coaching in 2007.
After being appointed as Wales U20 Assistant Coach, Baber progressed to Academy Skills Coach at Cardiff Blues before being named Head Coach of the Welsh capital club – alongside Justin Burnell - in 2011.
Baber left Cardiff in 2013 and was appointed Head of Hong Kong Rugby Sevens where he directed the senior men’s, women’s and youth programmes at elite level until 2016.
He signed a four-year deal to become Fiji Sevens Head Coach in 2016 and quickly established himself as a highly respected and knowledgeable coach on the World Rugby Sevens circuit.
He went on to claim 11 tournament victories with Fiji – beating the previous record of nine set by Ben Ryan – and guided Fiji Sevens to the 2018/19 World Rugby Sevens Series title.
Baber capped off an illustrious five-year period by leading Fiji to gold at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics where they claimed a 27-12 victory over New Zealand at Tokyo Stadium in July 2021.
By Reginald Chandar