Harlequins appoint Sean Long from St Helens as assistant coach for 2019/20
By Joe Tanner
Last Updated: 12/06/19 10:08am
Sean Long has joined Gallagher Premiership club Harlequins from Betfred Super League side St Helens to become their new assistant coach for the 2019/20 season.
Long was assistant to Keiron Cunningham and Justin Holbrook during his time at Totally Wicked Stadium since his appointment in 2015.
The former Great Britain and England international departs with St Helens currently four points clear at the top of the Super League.
The 42-year-old has also helped Saints progress to the Challenge Cup semi-final where they will face Halifax RLFC on July 27, after a 48-10 victory over Wakefield Trinity.
He was also previously appointed assistant head coach for Samoa at the 2017 Rugby League World Cup.
On switching codes and taking his first rugby union coaching role, Long said: "I'm really excited to be joining Harlequins.
"It's time for me to pursue a new challenge and Quins is a top club with a group of talented players and hard-working staff; I can't wait to join up with them.
St Helens vs Leeds Rhinos
June 21, 2019, 7:00pm
"I wanted to take this opportunity to thank everyone in rugby league for the time I have had there, but now I'm focused on Harlequins and am looking forward to getting started on the preparations for next season."
Despite tries from Danny Care, Elia Elia and Joe Marchant, Harlequins' Premiership play-off hopes ended this season on May 18 after a 25-27 defeat to London Wasps.
Harlequins Head of Rugby Paul Gustard believes the former rugby league scrum-half can help the club better their fifth-placed finish in 2018/19.
Gustard said: "I am delighted that Sean has decided to join Quins ahead of other Premiership options as he takes his first foray into coaching union.
"As a player, Sean was a stand-out amongst his peers and perhaps his greatest strength, despite all his talent, is his competitive desire.
"We can see with the performance of St Helens this year the impact he is now having as a coach with their attack as they compete at the top of Super League and enter into the semi-finals of the Challenge Cup after a 40-point thrashing over Wakefield.
"We welcome Longy to Harlequins and look forward to the contribution he will make as we look to build on last season's improvements."