BRETT WILKINSON DEPARTS BUCCANEERS | News | Buccaneers Rugby Football Club Athlone

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published:Jun  19   2017


BRETT WILKINSON departs Buccaneers Rugby Football Club to take up an International coaching opportunity with the Hong Kong Cricket Club, which despite its name is one of the former British colony’s leading rugby clubs. Wilkinson, who has been head coach at Buccaneers for the past two seasons, takes up his new appointment next month. The South African played with Connacht 183 times and won 6 Ireland A caps. A renowned front row forward, he enjoyed terrific success in his maiden senior club coaching appointment at Buccs guiding them to the All-Ireland League play-offs in his first season in charge as well as winning the Connacht Senior League title. The Pirates did even better last term, completing a Connacht Senior Cup and League double as well as romping to the Division 1B title and with it promotion to the top flight of club rugby in Ireland.


Wilkinson was an extremely popular and efficient coach with the Athlone club where he encouraged his youthful squad to play enterprising and expansive rugby whilst espousing discipline and workrate. He was a firm believer in respect for the club and honouring its ethos. Brett is assisting the midlanders in their search for a suitable replacement as Buccaneers prepare for Division 1A.


Wilkinson will link up at the club with another ex-Bucc in fellow Springbok Dylan Rogers who recently won his first international cap for Hong Kong in a narrow defeat to upcoming World Cup hosts Japan. Prop Rogers played U-20’s for Buccaneers whilst a student at Athlone I.T. and later returned to play with Connacht where Wilkinson was a teammate for a number of seasons. He retired from rugby some years ago when work took him to Hong Kong (which is similar in size to Co.Longford but with a population of 7.5 million!) but resumed playing a couple of years ago.


Everyone at Buccaneers RFC thanks Brett for his input and contribution over the past two seasons and he and his wife Patrice are wished every success as they take on fresh challenges.  


Meanwhile, Kolo Kiripati has taken up the role of Head Coach with North Kildare and he too is wished all the best as he dips his toe into coaching.