Richard Graham (rugby union)

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Richard Graham
Full name Richard Graham
Nickname Woody, Spindle
Date of birth (1972-08-05) 5 August 1972 (age 44)
Place of birth Charleville, Queensland, Australia
School Marist College Ashgrove
Rugby union career
Position(s) Assistant Coach
Current team Georgia
Senior career
Years Team Apps (Points)
Provincial / State sides
Years Team Apps (Points)
1998–2002 Reds 13 ((25))
Super Rugby
Years Team Apps (Points)
1998–2002 Reds 2 ((0))
National team(s)
Years Team Comps
1998–2002 Australia
Teams coached
Years Team
Queensland Reds
Western Force
Saracens RFC
Bath RFC
Medal record
Men's rugby sevens
Representing  Australia
Commonwealth Games
Bronze medal – third place 1998 Kuala Lumpur Team competition

Richard Graham (born 5 August 1972) is a rugby union coach and former Head Coach of the Australian Super Rugby franchises, the Queensland Reds and Western Force.

Early life[edit]

Richard Graham was born in central western Queensland (Charleville). He attended Marist College Ashgrove as a boarding student and was a talented schoolboy sportsman. Graham played 1st XI Cricket, captained 1st XV Rugby and captained the school athletics team. In his final year at school, Graham won the TAS 110m hurdles. Former Wallabies Daniel Herbert, Graeme Bond and Pat Howard were part of Graham's 1st XV in 1990.[1] Graham played for the undefeated Australian Schoolboys Rugby Union team that toured Europe in 1990/91 with the likes of Matt Burke, Peter Jorgensen, Jacob Rauluni and Scott Bowen. He completed a Bachelor of Education degree at the Queensland University of Technology.

Playing career[edit]

Richard Graham played a year of Colts rugby at the GPS Rugby Club and was awarded the Queensland Colt of the Year in 1991. The following year saw Graham suffer a badly broken leg and subsequently a number of seasons away from the game. In 1995 he changed clubs and began playing for the Easts RFC in Brisbane winning the 1997 Brisbane premiership and also the 1999 Brisbane premiership as captain. He made his debut for the Queensland Reds against Hong Kong in 1998 and in 2001 played for Australia A against the touring British and Irish Lions. It was as a Rugby 7s player however that Graham was best known. He played for and captained the Australian Rugby 7s team between 1998 and 2002, his teams won 5 IRB series events and he attended 2 Commonwealth Games – 1998 (Kuala Lumpur) and 2002 (Manchester).[1] In 1998 the team won a bronze medal beating Samoa in the 3rd and 4th play off.

Coaching career[edit]

Richard Graham began his professional coaching career with the Bath RFC in the English Premiership under former Wallaby hooker Michael Foley. In his 4 seasons with the club, he also worked under John Connolly (former Wallaby coach) and Brian Ashton (former England coach). Graham then moved to the Saracens RFC where he worked under Alan Gaffney (former Assistant Wallaby and Ireland coach) and Eddie Jones (former Wallaby coach) before finishing as Head Coach in 2009.[1] In June 2009 Graham joined Robbie Deans as Skills Coach of the National team.[1] While in this role he also accepted a position of Assistant Coach to former All Blacks coach John Mitchell at the Western Force. When Mitchell unexpectedly joined the Lions in Johannesburg in September 2010 Graham was promoted Head Coach a year earlier than anticipated.[2][3][4][5] On 16 April 2012 Graham was sacked as coach of the Western Force after he announced he would be joining the Reds to become Head Coach in 2013.[6] After two games into the 2016 Super Rugby season Graham and the Queensland Reds parted ways.[7]

In June 2016 Richard Graham was appointed attack and backs coach for the Georgia Rugby Union national side. The team drew with Samoa and beat both Tonga and Fiji.


External links[edit]