Whiffin tipped for Scarlets role
JOHAN Ackermann has confirmed that highlyrated coach Richard Whiffin has been approached by the Scarlets.
Gloucester look set to lose their head of academy at the end of the season with Whiffin the favourite to become the new skills coach at the Pro14 giants, but head coach Ackermann said: “I’m aware of that but I don’t want to elaborate on that.
“That’s up to David (Humphreys, director of rugby) and the club to talk about it and make announcements if they need to be.”
Whiffin would be seen as a big loss at Gloucester having made his mark since joining in 2016 from London Irish but the pull of being involved at first team level could be too strong.
“Each individual must decide his own future, where he feels his next growth is,” admitted Ackermann. “Opportunities only come around so many times and you must decide if it’s the right time as a coach just as a player.
“If he stays that would be great, it keeps consistency, continuity, but I also understand people move on in life.
“That’s part of being a club that you develop people to get better opportunities in life, just as players get better opportunities so if it happens than we wish him well but I haven’t sat down with Richard so we’ll see what the future holds.”
Whiffin was appointed as academy backs coach when he joined Gloucester three years ago but has led the youth department since the departure of Neil Mccarthy in the summer of 2017 and has helped the Under-18s reach backto-back Premiership Academy finals.
Ben Vellacott, Freddie Clarke and Tom Hudson are among those to have graduated to the senior squad during that time with another six players signing their first professional contracts for next season.
Whiffin has also been part of the England Under-20s setup this season and is due to head to Argentina with them for the World Rugby U20 Championships next month.
“It’s so good to see people get recognition,” said Ackermann. “It must have been picked up what he’s done with the boys in our academy, what he’s done at England Under-20s and obviously they’ve done their homework so it’s good for him but I don’t want to get too involved in that until it’s official so we’ll leave that to David and the club.”