Kingsley Jones to take over as head coach of Russian rugby team

Kingsley Jones is to take over as head coach of the Russian rugby team, an official with the Russian Rugby Union told RIA Novosti on Tuesday.

Jones has been with the Bears as team director since the spring, and assisted former coach Nikolai Nerush at the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand, where the Bears made their first-ever appearance this fall.

Former England dual-code international Henry Paul, who was the backs coach for the Bears, is to coach Russia’s rugby sevens squad, the official said.

Despite a relatively successful World Cup showing, Nerush stepped down, leaving the post vacant until now. Russia lost all four group games as expected but scored tries against Italy, Ireland and Australia.

Jones and Paul agreed in principle to the terms and conditions of the job over the weekend in the southern city of Krasnodar, during the final stages of the national Rugby sevens championship, the source said.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because their appointments are not expected to be officially announced until Wednesday, after talks with Russian Rugby Union chief Vyacheslav Kopyov.

Jones’ first task will be to prepare the team for the second half of the 2011-2012 European Nations Cup.

Paul will look to lay the foundations for the 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens, which will be played in Moscow.

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