Peter is a sports writer at the Bay of Plenty Times

Rugby: Bay challenge thrills new coaches

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Victoria Grant is one of five new coaches named by Bay of Plenty Rugby.
Victoria Grant is one of five new coaches named by Bay of Plenty Rugby.

Bay of Plenty Rugby has appointed new head coaches to mentor the union's sevens and age-group programme.

Paul Tietjens is the new Bay of Plenty men's sevens team coach, Victoria Grant will take the women's sevens team, with Aaron Bidois (BOP under-16) and Nick Halzedos and Kris Vine (BOP under-15) heading key junior rep teams.

Recently returned from France where he coached the New Zealand Selection side at the Howard Hinton Sevens, Tietjens said he was really excited to be appointed.

"I have been working under Peter Woods for past two years as the Bay of Plenty sevens trainer.

"I am looking forward to progressing my coaching and moving into the Bay of Plenty sevens head coaching role," Tietjens said.

"Obviously it's another stepping stone towards where I eventually want to be as a coach professionally one day. This is definitely a big stepping stone that I am really excited about. I am really looking forward to working with the union and the players."

Former Black Fern and Rotoiti women's coach Victoria Grant was equally upbeat on her appointment.

"I am really excited about the role and the season ahead. I have recently been selected on the professional coaching development course held through Sport Bay of Plenty.

"I see development as our key focus with the girls coming through this year. We've got a lot of under-18s and schoolgirls who are really talented and just need a stepping stone in to women's rugby. Development will be key this year going forward."

Bay of Plenty coach development manager Rodney Gibbs said: "We are really happy to have appointed Paul and Victoria as our men's and women's sevens coaches for the 2016/17 season.

"They are young coaches on the rise that have a very good understanding of the game and are very motivated to be involved in our high performance programme and grow the sevens programme in the Bay of Plenty which is really exciting for the union.

"At the under-16 level, we were looking for someone who was committed to growing as a coach through our coaching programme, which will then transfer through to developing our young Bay of Plenty players. Aaron is currently sitting his NZR Level 2 coaching qualification and has good experience developing young men. He has a great coach/management team in place which is really important and exciting for the programme ahead."

Gibbs is pleased with the new under-15 coaches.

"We have also appointed Nick Halzedos and Kris Vine as coaches of the Bay of Plenty under-15 team. Both of these coaches are also sitting their NZR Level 2 coaching qualification this year. This is a great opportunity for their development as coaches.

"They will be preparing players through a development camp for a game against Waikato."

- Bay of Plenty Times

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