Whitehaven announce new head coach for next season

Drew Darbyshire

Jonty Gorley (left) will take over from Gary Charlton (right) as Whitehaven head coach in 2022

Whitehaven have announced that Jonty Gorley will take over the head coaching role from Gary Charlton from 2022.

Charlton will move upstairs to take on the reins as director of rugby at Haven, with current assistant coach Jonty Gorley taking charge next season.

Charlton said: “My decision to step back from coaching and move upstairs so to speak hasn’t been a sudden one. I have been talking to the board about this for the past three months.

“I have been involved in pro rugby nearly all my adult life and felt it was time to take the step away from the frontline, but I also want to give something back to the game and local area, so the role offered to me by the board was right up my street. To continue working with Ashley, Mark Stamper and the current board is great as they have shown their total faith in me and my staff over the past three years, they’re great for this club and the area and I am more than happy to continue working with them in this way.”

On becoming Whitehaven head coach, Gorley said: “I am privileged and excited to be taking over as head coach at Whitehaven, it’s a great personal honour for me to be considered and approached to be head coach of this club. I didn’t think I would ever get the chance to be a head coach, so I am really looking forward to the challenge. I would like to thank the club’s board for giving me this opportunity.

“It obviously helps that I am already at the club, knowing the lads, the backroom staff, the directors and how the club works. We have already started putting together a squad that I feel will compete and build on from this season, and at this point we’ve got 18 already committed to the club, with hopefully another couple agreeing by the end of this week.

“I have been involved with professional rugby league for eight years now as an assistant coach and before that I spent a good 12 years plus involved with local community clubs , scholarships and academies. I’ve worked under some great coaches who have taught me a lot, be that when I was playing or coaching, and this will stand me in good stead for the job ahead.

“I can’t wait to get started in the role now and see what we can achieve at this club.”