Redpath hailed as ‘ideal appointment’ by Sale Sharks chief

New Sale Sharks rugby director Bryan Redpath has been described as an “absolutely ideal” appointment by the club’s chief executive Steve Diamond.

Former Sale captain Redpath’s move from Gloucester had been widely expected following weeks of speculation linking him with the post.

He spent five years at the Aviva Premiership club as a player, with his farewell appearance coming in the 2005 European Challenge Cup final when Sale beat French club Pau.

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Redpath quit as Gloucester head coach in April – the west country club subsequently failed to qualify for next season’s Heineken Cup – and club director Ryan Walkinshaw issued an immediate warning to Sale.

Walkinshaw warned of potential legal action against Gloucester’s Premiership rivals if proof ever emerged that an approach had been made to Redpath while he was still employed at Kingsholm.

Walkinshaw said on Twitter in April: “If we find any evidence that Sale have manufactured this, we’ll fight back with a no-holds-barred legal attack.”

Sale have vigorously and consistently denied any such approach.

“Bryan became available from Gloucester at the end of last season,” Diamond said. “As soon as he did, we were keen to talk to him. Following our discussions, he agreed to be our director of rugby, and we are delighted.

“Bryan is very similar to me in many respects. His DNA was on the club for a long time, as was mine.

“There are two routes we need to take going forward. I can take the strategy and drive the club forward off the field, but in the last weeks of last season I found myself trying to be ‘master of all trades’ and have to be honest in that nobody can do that well.

“I was therefore looking for someone who had a similar hardworking, knowledgeable outlook with no ‘messing around’ to deal with on-field matters. Bryan is absolutely ideal. He has very similar attributes to myself, although in all honesty he was a better player.

“The skill in my job is getting the recruitment right, and putting the club in the hands of successful coaches, and I am sure that is the direction we are going.” Redpath said he was “delighted” to be back at Sale as they prepare for a new campaign that will see them ground-share with Salford City Reds Rugby League club next term.

“I am delighted with the move and I am looking forward to the challenge ahead,” Redpath said.

“I want to carry on what Steve has started. He’s brought back a club culture.

“People who care about playing for Sale Sharks are important. I had five great years here and loved every minute. I want to make sure that everyone is playing here for the right reasons.

“Where can it end up? I don’t know. When I first came here, [owner] Brian Kennedy talked about winning the Premiership. The club did that in six years.

“If we can get to the top end of the Premiership, that would be great. It’s not easy.

“To reach the top four, there is a lot of hard work for us, but Steve set a good standard in the last 12 months. We need to keep on that road.”