GALA player Craig Dods has been appointed as a specialist skills coach in kicking by Scottish Rugby and will start his new role next month, reporting directly to Head of Player Transition, Kenny Murray.

The new full-time roles has been created to ensure that Scotland’s national principles for kicking is able to effectively be delivered to specific players including Scotland Women and Girls performance programs, Scotland’s representative age-grade sides, FOSROC Scottish Rugby Contracted Academy players in their respective pro-team environments and those in the FOSROC Regional Academies.

In addition to delivering expert coaching Dods will lead on the creation, and support on the implementation, of kicking coaching resources to influence the game at club and school level.

Dods joins Scottish Rugby from Gala RFC where he is the Development Officer.

In his new role he will work alongside Chris Paterson who will continue as specialist kicking coach across the professional and international teams.

Dods has previously held the same position at Kelso RFC and was Head of Women’s Rugby in Hungary for two seasons leading them to their best-place finish on the Rugby Europe sevens circuit.

Dods will be known to some in the Scottish Rugby coaching network as he often delivers courses on Scottish Rugby’s Coach Development Pathway. He assisted with the Scotland U16 programme in 2019/2020 and has regularly coached FOSROC Scottish Rugby Academy regional age-grade sides since 2017. He is the son of former Scotland and British and Irish Lions full-back, Peter Dods.

He said: “Kicking has been a passion of mine from a young age so I’m excited that this role will allow me the scope to work with players on an individual basis to really drill down into improving their kicking whilst helping other coaches improve their delivery of Scotland’s national principles too.

“I’m looking forward to helping shape the next generation of talented rugby players in Scotland.”

Scottish Rugby’s Head of Player Transition Kenny Murray said: “Craig is a talented young coach who has come through Scottish Rugby’s coaching pathway. His enthusiasm and technical knowledge for all aspects of the skill will help our kickers grow into the best players that they can be.”