LEWIS PATERSON is delighted former Plymouth Albion and Launceston forward Jamie Tripcony is joining Ivybridge as a player-coach.
The 27-year-old teacher will be the National Three South West club’s new forwards coach, taking over from Gareth Elliott, who will be concentrating on his work commitments with Exeter Chiefs next season.
Ivybridge player-coach Paterson said: “It’s a shame to lose Gareth because of his work commitments, but we are really pleased Jamie is coming on board.
“When you lose someone like Gareth, who has done so much for the club, it leaves really big shoes to fill. You have to find the right player and personality to fit in.
“I have known Jamie for years, since I was at school. I actually spoke to him when he was leaving Launceston but he wanted to go back to Newton Abbot at the time.
“But I know he wants to get into coaching, so when this opportunity came up I thought we would offer it to him.
“I think he can do wonders for the club. Our team is quite young and hopefully he can bring those players on.
“He is a great clubman. I know that from Launceston. He was very committed to them for years and got 100 caps.
“We are a tight-knit club and so need the right person.
“He’s got a family and he wanted to find the right club he can stay at and finish off his career.
“He wants to get into coaching and hopefully he can carry on the job Gareth has done but just add a some of his experience.
“He’s got an operation coming up in June or July and so he will be out for the first couple of months playing wise but that will give him a chance to get into his coaching role.”
Ivybridge finished eighth in their first season in National Three South West.
They started the season well and finished it brilliantly but it was just the middle part of the campaign that saw them miss out on a higher place finish.
“We are hoping we can have a bit better winter season this time,” said Paterson. “Jamie’s bit of experience might help us there.
“We are looking to try and get the club finishing a bit higher up the league next season.”
Ivybridge have already started planning their pre-season.
They are set to play Plymouth Fiji on August 6 in a family day at the club before taking on Taunton away the following weekend.