Hook makes swift return to Pooler
PONTYPOOL have appointed Mike Hook as their new head coach just days after he left the club.
Hook will lead Pooler’s challenge in the Championship after they failed in their High Court bid to remain in the Premiership.
He will take over from James Chapron, who left at the end of last season because of his responsibilities as head of the Dragons Academy.
Former fly-half Hook has spent the last four years with Pooler, albeit with a brief break at the end of last week.
The 29-year-old, who was in charge of defence last term, resigned on Wednesday.
He had spent the close season fulfilling the difficult task of building a squad with team manager Shaun Rees and development XV head coach Matthew Chapman amid the legal rumblings.
Despite his efforts Pooler were still on the lookout for a new head coach but his resignation appears to have triggered officials into offering him the post.
Hook hopes to have a new forwards coach in place by the end of the week and is pleased to be back after a madcap few days.
He said: “I never really wanted to leave but there were a few things off the field that I felt needed sorting. Things look a bit more settled now and I am delighted to be back.
“This is a great opportunity for both me and the squad. It’s a fresh start and we have a young, hungry team with a few experienced players mixed in.
“Training has been enouraging and there is the chance to build over the next couple of seasons. I am excited by the challenge.”
Hook will be in the Pooler hotseat and his captain will be prop/hooker Jamie Jeune, who takes over from back row forward Geraint Morris.
His experience will be key given that Pontypool’s squad will largely be made up by youngsters that played for their development side last season.
Centre Chris Macey has been appointed as vice-captain and negotiations are continuing to retain a core of seasoned campaigners, including back row forwards Luke Dyckhoff and Mike Barber and talisman prop Nicky Blake.