The NSW Waratahs can confirm that Defence Coach, Steve Tandy will depart the organisation to take up a role overseas.
Tandy – who arrived at the NSW Waratahs in 2018 – will shortly join Scotland as their Defence Coach.
A former Ospreys and Neath loose forward, Tandy was integral to the NSW Waratahs strong defensive record last season, overseeing significant improvement in the team’s work off the ball.
Originally arriving in NSW as part of a professional development trip following six seasons with Welsh outfit, Ospreys, Tandy eventually signed a two-year deal to join the NSW Waratahs.
NSWRU GM of Rugby, Tim Rapp said that outcome was a result of Tandy’s character as well as his credentials as a coach.
“Steve took a chance [coming out to NSW] because he wanted to learn and grow as a coach, and we’re glad he chose to join us at the [NSW] Waratahs,” Rapp said.
“His passion for the game and commitment to the group were pretty evident early on and players and staff gravitated to that, he’s someone that we’ll all certainly miss.
“That [passion] is clear through the results he was able to achieve last year defensively, it’s an area of our game which was hugely improved.
“It’s a great opportunity for Steve and his family and while we’re disappointed to lose someone of his quality, it’s not something we ever wanted to stand in the way of.”
Tandy said he was thankful to the NSW Waratahs for the opportunity they gave him in 2018.
“To be involved with an organisation like the [NSW] Waratahs has been a great experience for me,” Tandy said.
“I’ve learnt so much, it’s taken me out of my comfort zone professionally and my family and I have really enjoyed living in Sydney.
“The players have been excellent to work with, they’re a fantastic bunch of lads who are always looking to better themselves. I could never fault their effort or commitment to their craft, which makes my job as a coach really enjoyable.
“It’s bittersweet [to be leaving] when I see the way the place is buzzing at the start of pre-season, Rob [Penney] is a great coach who has been really supportive since coming on board – there’s exciting times ahead for the group.”
NSW Waratahs Head Coach, Rob Penney said that while he was sorry lose Tandy, it was an exciting opportunity that couldn’t be passed up.
“That’s the wonderful thing about our game, there’s opportunities for individuals to grow, succeed and achieve their goals,” Penney said.
“I’ve only known Steve a short time, but to see him join an international coaching staff is really satisfying, knowing the work he has put in here at the [NSW] Waratahs over the last 18 months.
“Myself and the playing group wish him all the best in his new role and thank him for everything he’s contributed to the [NSW] Waratahs during his time here.”
Penney said that there would be no immediate rush to find a replacement for Tandy, as he assesses the needs of the management team.
“The most important thing for me right now is to build relationships right across the group, while also getting our management processes established,” Penney added.
“In consultation with Tim [Rapp] I’ll be looking at how we as a management team are set up and making any changes accordingly.
“In the short term between myself, Matt [Cockbain] and Whits [Chris Whitaker] we’ll cover Steve’s absence before making a decision on coaching staff responsibilities moving forward.”