Stones is new Rishies coach

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Old Rishworthians have appointed Chris Stone as their new head coach.

Stone, who is the former RFU Community Rugby Coach for West Yorkshire, takes over from Damian Ball, who has left the club after three successful seasons in charge.

Stone (28), a former Rishworth School pupil, is also joining the school as a housemaster and the appointment is a joint role between the school and the club.

Until joining Rishworthians he had been a first team player at Preston Grasshoppers and then player/head coach at Aldwinians in the North Lancs/Cumbria league.

The club is eager to move up from Yorkshire Two and Rugby Chairman Peter Morgan said: “We are delighted with Chris’s appointment.

“He has got great rugby union credentials with a sound knowledge of the game in the local area and further afield.”

“We believe he is the sort of person who will be able to help the under-17s coaches and players achieve their objectives together with the rest of the club’s junior teams.”

Rishworthians has more than 320 junior and mini players and last season its under-16 and under-15 sides both reached major county finals.

“We also see Chris’s appointment as a way of strengthening our ongoing relationship with Rishworth School,” added Morgan.

Stone, who plays in the front row, will be meeting the club’s players and junior coaches at a special meeting at the club on Tuesday June 23.

Stone said: “It is a fantastic opportunity for myself and the club and hopefully we can drive things forward over the next couple of years.”

He said he was particularly excited by the strength of the Copley club’s junior section and his role would involve player development across the whole club.

Stone has been involved in coaching at Rishworth School in recent years so knows the Ford brothers.

England fly-half George and his older brother Joe, who plays for Sale Sharks, both attended the school. Their father is Bath coach and former rugby league professional Mike.

As well as changes on the field, Rishworthians are in the process alterations to the clubhouse with a new extension overlooking the pitch. Some of the funds have been provided by the RFU.

Rishworthians are the third of Calderdale’s six rugby union clubs to announce a change in head coach for next season following the returns of Dave Harrison to Heath and Russ Lawrance to Old Crossleyans.