As announced on the Gold Coast Suns website yesterday, veteran coach Neil Craig will join the club in a part-time mentoring capacity, providing support to senior coach Stuart Dew.
Speaking on SEN Breakfast this morning, Dew revealed that talks with Craig began over a year ago.
“We’ve been speaking to Neil for quite a while, and obviously he’s been heavily involved with England, in English Rugby.
"(Gold Coast GM of Football) Jon Haines and I met Neil not this October but last October – we went over to England and spent a little bit of time with Neil.
"He’s got a wealth of experience, he’s done a number of roles. He’s still challenging his philosophies – for me it was a no brainer (to work with him)."
Craig has been working with the English Rugby team as a Coaching Advisor and looks likely to continue in that capacity, splitting his time between the UK and the Gold Coast.
"He’s likely to continue that role with England, so we won’t get him too much," said Dew.
"When he’s here he’s going to be a great sounding board for not only myself but us as a coaching group.
"He's here for this week, just to get to know everyone, then he'll go over to England up until about March, early April."
With his decades of experience in professional sport, Dew believes Craig will provide an invaluable source of advice and support to the Suns coaches.
"We’ll make sure we use him but just having that sounding board as someone who’s sat in this seat as well that can support me.
"As a coaching group as well, how are we working together? We demand that of the players, and (Neil will be part of) making sure us as coaches are looking at improving ourselves as well."