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Wellington Lions announce coaches for 2024 NPC Campaign


The Wellington Lions have announced their Coaching Team for the 2024 Bunnings Warehouse National Provincial Championship (NPC), which begins in August.

Joining Wellington Lions Head Coach Alando Soakai on the Lions coaching setup will be Ryan Piper (Assistant Coach), Trent Renata (Assistant Coach) and Greg Halford (Scrum Coach).

Soakai – who moved into the Head Coach’s role after it was vacated by Tamati Ellison after last season’s NPC – said they are well into their preparations for the upcoming NPC campaign and is excited what this coaching team will bring to the table.

“I am very excited about the coaching setup we have for this year’s NPC,” said Soakai.

“I feel we have a nice balance between the coaches around our care for Lions rugby, experience, and the passion we have for the game. A major positive is our coaches have come through the local system and are willing to test themselves at the next level.

“We have unfinished business in terms of last year. It’s an opportunity for us to grow our footy. If we rely on last year to get us through this year it won’t work, so it’s important for us to grow our game on and off the field and take the extra step. All coaches will have a crucial part to play.”

Soakai said the coaches will initially name a wider training squad early in May and would work towards naming a squad for the Wellington Centurions match against Manawatu XV, to be played on 12 June.

“The purpose of that Centurions game is to create depth in our squad and to also see who is ready to step up to the next level. We have contracts available for the 2024 season and it will be an opportunity for players to come through club rugby to become a Lion.”

The coaches will finalise their 2024 NPC squad in July.