Hassall named Ripon’s new director of rugby

New Ripon director of rugby Ian Hassall
New Ripon director of rugby Ian Hassall

Ripon Rugby Club have announced the appointment of their new director of rugby, Ian Hassall.

Hassall, who played for the Harrogate team which won three promotions and two Yorkshire Cups in the 1990s, will be tasked with returning Ripon to Yorkshire Two, after their relegation in April.

He is looking forward to getting started, saying: “I am very proud to be appointed director of rugby and look forward to the challenges that lay ahead. I am enthusiastic to start working with all the players and I would particularly encourage new players to the club as well as those that have stopped playing and wish to return to the game.”

An experienced player who enjoyed success as a junior coach for nine years at Mallorie Park and led the club’s Colts to the Yorkshire League title, Hassall will take charge of all senior rugby at Ripon.

He began playing at the age of 16 for York RI, before captaining Yorkshire U-19s. After settling at Harrogate between 1985 and 2002, he returned to York RI before retiring. It was only when eldest son Finn wanted to play rugby that Hassall got back into the game and started coaching at Ripon RUFC.

Club president Andy Proud said: “We are delighted to announce that Ian Hassall has been appointed the new director of rugby for Ripon Rugby Club.

“He will take charge of all senior rugby at the club and his appointment has been extremely well received by players and members alike.”