Former Wales captain Kingsley Jones named Canadian men's rugby coach

Thursday, 21 September 2017, 11:43:31 PM. Former Wales captain Kingsley Jones has been named head coach of Canada's men's 15s rugby program. The 48-year-old Jones succeeds New Zealand's Mark Anscombe, who was fired in August after Canada lost to the U.S. in its first crack at qualifying for the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

Former Wales captain Kingsley Jones has been named head coach of Canada's men's 15s rugby program.

The 48-year-old Jones succeeds New Zealand's Mark Anscombe, who was fired in August after Canada lost to the U.S. in its first crack at qualifying for the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

Jones most recently was with the Welsh Rugby Union, tasked with identifying and recruiting talent to the pro game in Wales.

He has coached the Russian national team as well as the Newport Gwent Dragons in Wales and the Sale Sharks and Doncaster in England. He was also an assistant coach with London Welsh.

Jones led Sale to the Premiership title in 2006.

A flanker, he played club rugby in Wales for Cross Keys, Pontypridd and Ebbw Vale, before moving to England's Gloucester, Worcester and Doncaster.

Priority is 2019 World Cup

Canada, currently ranked No. 24 in the world, will take on No. 18 Uruguay early next year in its next bid at World Cup qualifying.

"Every coach wants to work at the highest level and compete on the world stage, I'm grateful for the opportunity and very much looking forward to working with this group of talented and committed players," Jones said in a statement.

"Our immediate priority is attaining qualification for RWC2019, this is critical."

Jones, who won 10 caps for Wales between 1996 and 1998 and captained his country once, is slated to start his new job in October.

A Canada 'A' side, coached by Mike Shelley, will also travel to Uruguay next month to compete in the Americas Pacific Challenge, a developmental tournament.

Canada will face the New Zealand Maori All Blacks on Nov. 3 before heading to Europe to face No. 12 Georgia, No. 19 Spain and No. 9 Fiji.

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