Former England international hooker Graham Dawe has been appointed as the Cornwall coach for the new season.
Dawe, the former coach at Plymouth Albion, will be assisted by Ian Morgan, as Cornwall try and go one better in next season’s Bill Beaumont County Championship after losing in the final at Twickenham earlier this year.
The appointments follows the decision of long standing coach “Benji” Thomas to stand down at the end of last season and have been made after the post was advertised.
Dawe, who was a member of the 1991 Cornwall side that won the County Championshp in such thrilling style against Yorkshire, played for England, Bath, Sale, Plymouth Albion and Launceston.
He was involved with the England squad for ten years and played in the 1987 and 1995 World Cups.
Dawe won 14 major trophies during his 12 years at Bath before moving on to Sale and also represented the Barbarians, South West, and Cornwall.
He became player-coach of Plymouth Albion in 1999 and is believed to be the first 50-year-old to play professional rugby, turning out for Plymouth Albion in the Championship and British & Irish Cup.
He guided Plymouth from the bottom of National League Three South to the RFU Championship.
Dawe said: “I am looking forward to coaching the Cornwall senior squad, and working with Ian Morgan in preparing the squad for the 2014 County Championship campaign.
“Although I have other commitments in the game I feel it is a great honour to be asked to coach a county team that has so much rugby history and passion for the County Championship”.
Morgan has played for Cornwall, RAF, Combined Services, Camborne, Lydney, Redruth, St. Ives and Brixham and coached St Ives, Brixham, Cornwall 20’s, Cornwall Senior 15, RAF, & Combined Services.
He said: “I am really excited about coaching Cornwall; it is something I have wanted to do for a long time. It will be great to work with Dawesy, I have known Graham for a long time now and I think we will work well together,
"There is a lot of exciting talent in Cornwall and hopefully we can put a team together and go one better this season.
"The players will have learned from that experience and that will only help the squad, I can't wait to get started."
Welcoming the pair, CRFU President Ken Plummer said “Graham and Ian will bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to the CRFU. Personally and on behalf of the rugby community of Cornwall, I offer a big warm welcome to both of them.”
CRFU chairman Denis Preece joined in the warm welcome for both men.
“These appointments will allow us to build on the good work of last few seasons. They will add to the set up that we currently operate, and I am sure will bring a new focus to everyone involved with the county squad.”
Planning has already started for next season when Cornwall have the benefit of two home games in their Pool, with a debrief meeting between selectors and senior players taking place and a report is being prepared on lessons learned.
Coaches and selectors will now be identifying potential players within and outside the county over the coming months to enable them to select an enlarged squad in the new year.
Cornwall Bill Beaumont County Championship fixtures: Sat May 10: v North Midlands (h); Sat May 17: Gloucestershire (h); Sat May 24: Hertfordshire (a); Final: Sunday june 1 Twickenham.