Ian Watson (rugby league)
27 October 1976 |
Ian Watson (born 27 October 1976) is a Welsh rugby league coach and former player who is the head coach of the Salford Red Devils. As a player, he was a scrum-half or hooker who played for Swinton Lions, Salford City Reds, Workington Town, Widnes Vikings, Rochdale Hornets, Oldham, Halifax, Leigh Centurions and the Wales national rugby league team, currently holding the appearance record for the latter with 30.
Watson started his professional career with Salford coming though from local amateur team Eccles ARLFC. In July 1996, he joined Workington Town on loan, where he played in the Super League for the first time. He returned to Salford for the 1997 season, making 27 appearances for the club. Following the signings of Martin Crompton and Josh White, despite being a firm club favourite Watson was deemed surplus to requirements, and was sold to Swinton Lions for a fee of £15,000. He spent three years with Swinton before signing a one-year contract with Widnes Vikings for the 2001 season. He returned to the Super League a year later, re-joining Salford on a one-year deal. Watson played out the remainder of his career in the Championships.
In January 2014, Watson was appointed as player-coach for Swinton. He left Swinton in July 2014 to join Salford as an assistant coach. In late 2015, Watson was promoted to interim head coach after Iestyn Harris left the club. He was given the job on a permanent basis for 2016, working alongside Director of Rugby Tim Sheens.
Ian Watson holds the record for having won the most caps for Wales. Having made his début against the USA in Philadelphia in 1995, he made 30 appearances for his country, scoring 7 tries and kicking one goal. He played at the 2000 Rugby League World Cup. His final appearance for Wales came during the 2011 Four Nations tournament against New Zealand, and he announced his international retirement shortly after.
- Rugby League Project Coaching
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