Wales Rugby League have appointed Pontypridd-born Wayne Mansell as the new team manager for Wales u19s whilst Llanharan-born Tom Buckle takes a similar position at Wales U16s.

Both are voluntary positions and they will work alongside respective existing head coaches Anthony Walker and Lee Crooks.

Mansell, 34, is a qualified rugby union coach, who has coached sides at all levels for Porth Harlequins in the 15-man code from under 7s all the way up to seniors. He has also assisted Rhondda Outlaws in rugby league in the past.

A former rugby union player for Rhydfelin and American football player for South Wales Warriors, he works as a manager in the private sector.

He said: “I took on the role because Wales Rugby League’s vision excited me, and I felt that with a mix of my business and coaching knowledge, I could be a part of this and contribute to that vision.

“It’s also a great opportunity to work with the professional coaches and staff and give assist the future of professional rugby league for Wales.

Buckle, 26, is a rugby union player at Llanharan RFC and this is his first voluntary role in sports management.

He said: “I’m looking forward to helping Lee forge a successful pathway at under 16s level. It’s very exciting as hopefully this will pave the way for a number of the boys to go on and get full Welsh caps as has been done a number of times in the past.”

Wales U16 have also announced a heritage player trial camp. This will take place on Saturday 11 April at Queensway Stadium in Wrexham from 11am until 2pm. It’s designed for those players living outside of Wales and have parents or grandparents who are Welsh. For those who fit that criteria and want to try out to play for Wales, please register your interest by messaging Tom Buckle on 07450 931740.

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