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The RaboDirect Rebels today appointed Tony McGahan as Head Coach for the 2014 and 2015 seasons.
McGahan will take over the coaching duties from Damien Hill on 1 August.
Melbourne Rebels Chief Executive, Rob Clarke said, "These decisions are never easy, and will always lead to some disappointment.
However, an extensive review process was undertaken and the Board endorsed the Coaching Review Panel's recommendation. As part of the process the panel considered applications from sixteen coaches from Australia and overseas."
Clarke highlighted McGahan's successful international credentials at the top level in Europe and here in Australia with the Wallabies, his extensive experience as a defence coach and strong leadership style as important attributes in his appointment.
"Tony comes to Melbourne highly regarded as an international coach with a record of success at the top level. In particular, his time at Munster was a memorable period with multiple titles in the Heineken Cup and Celtic League (now RaboDirect Pro 12)."
After leaving Australia in 2005, McGahan had success in Japan and then spent seven years at the Irish and European powerhouse club, Munster.
As Defence Coach and later Director of Rugby, he was part of two Heineken Cup titles and two Celtic League titles. He also coached Munster to their historic 15-6 win over the touring Wallabies at Thomond Park in 2010. In 2012, McGahan was appointed to the role of Wallabies Coaching Coordinator.
Rob Clarke paid tribute to departing Head Coach, Damien Hill, who was one of the Rebels' first appointments in 2010 as Assistant to inaugural Head Coach, Rod Macqueen. Hill took over as Head Coach in 2012.
"Hilly is a quality man, and he has made a significant contribution to our Club," said Clarke.
"During our foundation period Damien has had to deal with a variety of challenging circumstances both on and off the field. At all times he has managed himself professionally, with integrity and has always earned the highest level of respect from his players and staff."
The Western Force return to NIB Stadium for the second time this season and the Honey Badger wants sea of blue fans to “get your carcass on the chair”! In 2014 the Force had a slow start to the season, before finishing off strongly, and they will be hoping for a repeat after winning just one of their opening four matches this season!
The Queensland Reds are struggling with injury and form at present, and they’ve been handed another massive blow this weekend with James O’Connor (leg) & Lachie Turner (concussion) being ruled out. Suffering a 23-5 loss to the NSW Waratahs on the weekend, the Reds will run onto Suncorp Stadium on Saturday night looking to turn their season around after just one win to their name in the opening four rounds coming against the Western Force two weeks ago!