Wales Lacrosse are pleased to announce our management, coaching and support staff that will lead us into the Men's U21 World Championships next summer in Limerick, Ireland.
We have clear pathways to developing players at club and university level in Wales and for encouraging coaches and support from current National Elite Squad players. Although there are some new faces to the staff, we are happy that many of the squad from European Championships 2019 are staying on with us, as we continue to develop our men's under 21's squad and players.
Our new head coach is no stranger to the role, with previous experience as both a player and head coach with the senior National Team and Under 19's at multiple World and European Championships. Dan Funnell, current Men’s Performance Director for Wales Lacrosse, is excited to be back in the role and looks forward to the World Championships next summer.
“I am delighted to announce this new team of coaches for this crucial process which will culminate in the World U21 Championships next summer,” said Head Coach Dan Funnell. “We are looking to build on the excellent spirit, skill and determination we displayed at the U20 European Championships in Prague and to push that even further with a co-ordinated training programme. We want to see new talent coming through and create a competitive but enjoyable environment. We are committed to growing the game at grass roots levels and preparing a skilled and highly-motivated U21 national elite squad to represent Wales.”
Joining Head Coach Funnell and the under 21's coaching team is a coach who was with the under 20's squad in Prague, Kieran Garvey. Kieran is currently playing and is also involved with the development coaching at Nottingham University. A former school lacrosse coach with experience coaching at international level, he brings even more experience to our new well rounded on field coaching team. Rounding off the coaching team are two current National Elite Squad players. Captain, Alex Williams, and Tomos Rosser, our most valuable player in Netanya, Israel. With a wealth of World and European Championships playing experience, they are excited to give back to the team that has given them so much. With both newcomers having experience of Head Coach roles with Leeds Beckett and Loughborough universities, respectively, as well as both being involved in their junior development programmes at their clubs, we hope you join us at wishing them luck in their first coaching roles at international level.
Our Squad Manager for the World Championship has been involved with Wales since 2018, managing the National Squad in Netanya, Israel and the U20 Squad in the Czech Republic, plus managing our Dragon Development squad for the NKI annual Tournament in Manchester. Our hard-working mother of dragons, has also received the Margaret Turner Trophy for her great work for Wales Men's Lacrosse, Jacqui Hicks.
Fitness is a core value within our set up at Wales Lacrosse and our Strength and Conditioning team reflect that. Owen Edwards is an S&C coach at Bristol Rovers Football Club and also works in their youth athletic development programme. As a current National Elite Squad player, Owen knows the importance of the fitness levels needed during international tournament lacrosse. James Meaker and Owen have been our strength and conditioning team for the last 2 years and have been working hard with the team throughout the Covid pandemic. James, a former player and now successful Personal Trainer and S&C coach, understands the importance of commitment to being the best we can be when the World Championships roll around next summer in Limerick, Ireland.
Wales Lacrosse knows the importance of junior development and has reflected that with the appointments to our men's U21 coaching staff.
We hope you will join us in wishing them luck for the upcoming year and for next summer at the Under 21's World Championships in Limerick, Ireland.
Dan Funnell – Head Coach
Alex Williams – Coach
Kieran Garvey – Coach
Tomos Rosser – Coach
Owen Edwards – Strength & Conditioning Coach
James Meaker – Strength & Conditioning Coach
Jacqui Hicks - Team Manager