Campese and Ella take on 7s roles

Written by Clayton Saville (Clayton(PJLD))

Posted in :In the news on 14 Mar 2008 at 13:25
Tagged with :

Wallabies legends David Campese and Mark Ella have accepted assistant coaching roles with the Australian Sevens team for upcoming tournaments in the iRB Sevens World Series.

Campese takes on an official coaching position with an Australian side for the first time with his appointment as an assistant to head coach Bill Millard for the Hong Kong Sevens on March 28-30 and the International Rugby Sevens Adelaide on April 5-6.Ella, who coached the Australian Sevens team at the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur, will join the coaching team for the South Australian event.

The former Test greats will also serve as ARU ambassadors during the Australian leg of the iRB Sevens World Series, which is likely to attract an audience of more than 30,000 fans over two days at Adelaide Oval.

Australian Rugby Union Managing Director and CEO John O’Neill today welcomed the decision by Campese and Ella to be involved with the national Sevens team.

“It’s wonderful to have these two icons of Australian Rugby back in the fold,” said Mr O’Neill. “David and Mark are two of the greatest players this country has produced. The skills they possessed set them apart during their illustrious on-field careers. Now they have the chance to impart some of that unique store of knowledge to the current generation.

“It is also an opportunity for us to tap into their thoughts. I’m sure the assistance they will offer Bill Millard will be rewarding for all involved, and especially for the developing stars of tomorrow that are part of our Sevens program.”

Campese will fly from his home in Durban, South Africa, to link with the Sevens team in Hong Kong. He will also accompany the squad to Adelaide.

“This is like a dream for me,” said Campese, Australia’s first Test centurion with 101 caps from 1982-1996. “I’ve always wanted the opportunity to be involved again with Australian Rugby and to help out in Hong Kong – a place that has so many memories for me after playing Sevens there for more than a decade – is an honour. I’ve coached in Singapore, been to Japan on a number of occasions, worked with the Sharks Super 14 franchise in South Africa, and I’m currently coaching a schoolboys side in Durban.

“So it’s great to be involved for the first time in a coaching capacity with Australian Rugby. I feel I can make a contribution. To help these guys and promote the Sevens . . . I’m taking the role extremely seriously. For the younger players in the squad, Sevens is a genuine step on a path that hopefully leads them to Wallabies selection. I’m excited to have the chance to help these guys achieve that goal.”

Former Test captain Ella, who retired at the age of 25 after his stunning performances at flyhalf during the Grand Slam tour of the UK and Ireland in 1984, has previously coached in Italy and at Sevens level.

“I’m really looking forward to being involved again,” he said. “It’s a long time since I’ve had a direct connection with Australian Rugby, so the invitation to help out in Adelaide came as a very pleasant surprise. Like Campo, I feel there is an opportunity to assist in the area of skills coaching. Helping to promote the game and Sevens in particular is also appealing to me.”

Australian Sevens head coach Millard said he was excited to have two of the most high-profile figures in the game ready to work alongside him.

“I’m looking forward to it, and so are the boys,” he said. “David and Mark are rugby icons. They will give the Sevens a great profile. I’m really excited to have them on board.”

The Hong Kong tournament will feature 24 teams in six pools of four. Australia has been grouped with Tonga, France and Hong Kong. The Adelaide Sevens has 16 teams in four pools of four. Australia’s round robin opponents will be South Africa, USA and Canada.


Position: Wing, fullback
Tests: 101
Test career: 1982-1996
Test points: 315 (64 tries, 8 conversions, 7 penalty goals, 2 dropped goals)
Test debut: v New Zealand in Christchurch 1982

Position: Flyhalf
Tests: 25
Test career: 1980-84
Test points: 78 (6 tries, 3 conversions, 8 penalty goals, 8 dropped goals)
Test debut: v New Zealand in Sydney 1980


  • Yes David but what about Northwood Boys High?

  • Comment 1, posted at 14.03.08 13:44:12 by Dive Pass Reply
    Dive PassCurrie Cup player
  • I think we would have done well to hire Campo for our 7′s team.

  • Comment 2, posted at 14.03.08 14:48:56 by Nessa Reply
    NessaCurrie Cup player
  • Yes I was thinking that too…but word has it he is not the easiest person to work with.

  • Comment 3, posted at 14.03.08 16:00:17 by Dive Pass Reply
    Dive PassCurrie Cup player
  • Aussie 7′s could do with a lift, they havent been too hot lately

  • Comment 4, posted at 14.03.08 21:40:23 by spykerbaard Reply
    spykerbaardVodacom Cup player
  • I thought Campo was a great influence on the Sharks team. Guys like Odwa saw incalculable benefits in terms of skills and handling improvements. I remember a time when he couldn’t catch a damn ball!

    Campo did come across as a little arrogant, yet after all he is a legend and perhaps entitled to don a little excess pride.

  • Comment 5, posted at 14.03.08 22:14:37 by Waz Reply
    WazUnder 21 player
  • Problem is, he doesn’t seem to get on with ANYBODY! :-)

  • Comment 6, posted at 14.03.08 23:28:58 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
    robdylanHead Coach
  • From Fox:

    Deans calls up elite brains trust
    By Bret Harris

    AUSTRALIA legends David Campese and Mark Ella will become part of an elite advisory panel which will help incoming Test coach Robbie Deans understand the mindset of Australian rugby when he crosses the Tasman in June.

    ARU chief executive John O’Neill said the panel would include former great Wallabies players, captains and coaches.

    “Robbie Deans is very open to (it). In fact, it is his suggestion that he’d like to set up an advisory panel of handpicked former Wallabies, and perhaps former Wallabies coaches, to act as his sounding board,” O’Neill said. “He is a New Zealander. He is coming across the ditch. We know he is a wonderful coach, but he would like to have a number of people he could speak to.

    “And certainly David Campese and Mark Ella would be candidates for that advisory group. I know Robbie has got a great respect for them as rugby players and rugby brains.

    “If you start with World Cup captains. You’ve got (John) Eales and (Nick) Farr-Jones. And then you’ve got legends like Campese and Ella.

    “You could go back a generation and you might see an Andrew Slack or a Michael Hawker or a Mark Loane.

    “On the coaching front there are Rod Macqueen and Bob Dwyer as former World Cup-winning coaches.

    “I don’t want to be prescriptive because Robbie may decide to rotate people through this group. But he is very keen to get feedback and build up his knowledge of how the minds of Australian rugby players work.”

    O’Neill said Ella could also be involved as a Wallabies selector, while Campese was keen to return to Australia from a stint as a skills coach with the Sharks in Durban.

    In the meantime, Campese and Ella will return to the Australian rugby fold as guest assistant coaches of the national sevens team.

    Campese will assist Australia head coach Bill Millard at the Hong Kong sevens at the end of this month and the IRB tournament in Adelaide early next month.

    “They have been outside the tent for a number of years and this is the start of what I hope will be a very enduring relationship with both of them,” O’Neill said of Campese and Ella. “It’s not just a oncer. From an ARU perspective it’s going to be developed into something more long term.”

    The Australia sevens team in Adelaide will be boosted by the inclusion of Super 14 players such as the Waratahs’ Rob Horne and Western Force’s James O’Connor, who are not involved in the four 22-man squads.

    O’Neill said the ARU would review Australia’s sevens program at its board meeting in May.

    “Where do we want to take sevens? You’re either in it or you’re out of it,” O’Neill said. “At the moment we are a bit half pregnant, I guess.”

    it seems Campese is finally being recognised.

  • Comment 7, posted at 15.03.08 09:38:29 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©Head Coach

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