With new seasons, come new faces, and Swansea RFC are excited to kick off the Whites pre-season announcements with confirmation that Hugh Gustafson has joined the coaching set up as forwards coach.
The 30-year-old front row from Carmarthen comes on board with a wealth of playing experience across the Championship, Premiership, Regional and National levels having originally started his rugby pathway with the Scarlets Academy. Gustafson went on to play at age grade level at Under 16, Under 18 and Under 20, captaining at both 18s and 20s.
At national level, Hugh was a squad member in all three Wales age grade teams, playing at Under 16, skippering the U18’s international campaign in 2005 and the Under 20s team in the 2007 Six Nations.
Following nine seasons and 151 appearances with Newport Gwent Dragons, including appearances for the regions’ league sides including Pontypool, Ebbw Vale, Bedwas and Cross Keys, Gustafson made the move to the Ospreys last season where he continues to train and play as part of the squad along side his coaching commitment at St Helen’s.
On his new opportunity with The Whites, Gustafson commented; “Swansea RFC is a club renowned for its prestigious history, and the opportunity to become a part of the coaching set up is an exciting challenge to support my current playing commitments at regional level. With 12 years experience as a professional rugby player, I hope to be able guide and provide worthwhile advice and support to the younger players coming through The Whites set up, but also from my own perspective providing a worthwhile opportunity to add to my coaching skills with a team that has a lot of great potential”
Hugh’s previous coaching experience includes Dragons Under 16s, three seasons with the senior team at Tumble RFC and one season with Tumble RFC women’s side.
On the first appointment of the new season Director of Rugby, Richard Lancaster said; “Gus has made an immediate impact on our environment and is driving really high standards which the squad are responding to. The experience Gus brings to the group and the fact that his day job is still working in a professional environment will be invaluable to us I'm sure over the coming season. Hugh has brought in some fresh and creative ideas already and understands what we are trying to do at Swansea and is excited by it. He is a great fit and most importantly a great man. We are all looking forward to working alongside him over the coming months.”