Neil Taylor is to join Weightlifting Wales From the RFU as South Wales Performance Manager.

Neil Taylor is to join Weightlifting Wales From the RFU as South Wales Performance Manager.

Taking up the role in mid April 2017, he will work with the Sports Manager Simon Roach, Weightlifting Wales Performance group and Sport Wales Performance team to develop and implement Medal Winning strategies and System Building plans (talent development systems) for both Weightlifting and Para Powerlifting and will manage and mentor the South Wales Regional Development Officer’s

Taylor is a highly experienced performance, strength and conditioning coach with a proven track record of success across senior, academy, U20 age group rugby union and Paralympic sport.

Born, bred and residing in Cwmbran, Taylor is a former Olympic weightlifter and Commonwealth Games bronze medalist.

Post competing Taylor moved into elite sport and joined the Worcester Warriors rugby union academy, where he played an instrumental role in developing their strength, conditioning, nutrition and rehabilitation programmes.

Taylor’s role at Worcester quickly gained wider recognition within the sport, after just a year at Worcester he was recruited by the Rugby Football Union as an International Strength & Conditioning coach, a role which spanned 12 and a half years.

His coaching and personal skills were fully utilized by the RFU as he developed excellent working relationships with the Premiership clubs and coaches, leading the performance programme for the England U20’s and playing a key role in their success on the world stage, when over a four year period they reached four successive finals at the U20 World Championships, winning three of them in 2013, 2014 and 2016.

The four finals saw the introduction onto the world stage of an array of English rugby talent, including two time RBS 6 Nations winner, Maro Itoje (Saracens), Ellis Genge (Leicester Tigers) and Harry Mallinder (Northampton Saints), the latter captaining England to their Junior World Cup win last year in Manchester.

Taylor also worked with the England U18’s and England Saxons squads and played a crucial role in the England player pathway system, working closely with the Premiership and Championship clubs in developing their players to compete at the highest level.

A proven mentor to coaches and players Taylor’s wide and varied success has included coaching Paralympic weightlifter Emma Brown and wheelchair racer John Harris who both went onto win Paralympic Gold Medals.

He is now looking forward to his next challenge with Weightlifting Wales. “It is an exciting time for Weightlifting Wales and this is a chance to work with highly talented lifters across the pathway and help develop the sport further throughout the country” said Taylor.