Former Munster & Springboks Coach Aled Walters Joins English Premiership Club
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Former Munster and Springboks coach Aled Walters has signed for Leicester Tigers in the English Premiership ahead of the 2020/21 season as Head of Physical Performance.
Walters as been head of Athletic Performance at South African (SA) Rugby since 2018 and played a key role as the Springboks won the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan with victory over England.
The Welshman spent four seasons with Scarlets before taking the role of Head of Strength and Conditioning at Taranaki in New Zealand and then Athletic Performance Coach at the Brumbies in Super Rugby.
In 2012, Walters became head of athletic performance/strength and conditioning at Munster Rugby, spending six years in Limerick before Rassie Erasmus pinched him when he left the southern province for SA Rugby.
Much like a sports therapist – whoever is in charge of performance and strength at any team plays a massive role, doing a lot of the unseen work that separates a good team for a great team and Waters is one of the very best.
Speaking about his appointment at Tigers, Walters admitted to having been a long-time admirer of Premiership side.
“I grew up a staunch Scarlets fan and have a lot of history with Leicester,” Waters said.
“I was there when the famous Tim Stimpson penalty went over.”
“You have to fit the culture and I definitely appreciate that. That’s why teams like Leicester are more attractive to me.
“Leicester is a very similar club to Munster and Scarlets – it’s a working-class area, they’re tougher people and that’s something that definitely appealed to me.”
Watters admitted he doesn’t take leaving the World Champions lightly but likes the challenge at Leicester to what faced him when he joined the Springboks two years ago.
“It’s a genuine privilege and I don’t take leaving a World Cup team lightly,” he said.
“It’s a very similar challenge to a couple of years ago, when I was approached to join the South African team who were playing below par.
“I see this as a similar scenario, and what I know first-hand is that things can change, but it takes a lot of hard work and only happens if everyone buys into it.
“The challenge wouldn’t be as attractive if I didn’t believe there were things in place to turn things around and get the job done.”
Waters joins England coach Steve Borthwick next season at Welford Road and if any team was worth betting on for next season it’s most certainly the Tigers. England’s sleeping giants might finally be about to wake up.