The Minnesota Valkyries are set to kick off regular season league play on Saturday with a new coaching staff at the helm. Head coach Nate Osborne and assistant coaches Chalie Baleirara, Simon Sutcliffe, and Ash Horobin will be pulling double duty this fall, splitting coaching time between the Valkyries and Metropolis Rugby Club. All four men bring a wealth of international rugby knowledge and have coached at multiple levels of the game.
We talked to Osborne, Baleirara and Sutcliffe about their rugby experience and thoughts on the upcoming season. Osborne, grew up playing rugby in Australia and played professionally in his home country before moving to the US. Osborne made the switch to coaching, starting at the high school level, followed by a successful tenure as Metropolis’ D1 side head coach. His success at the senior level landed Osborne an opportunity at the national level where he was the USA Eagles men’s national team attack and backs coach for two years and during the 2015 World Cup.
Baleirara, originally from Fiji, played in England, Ireland, and South Africa and professionally for the Sale Sharks before making the move to Minnesota. Baleirara has coached at multiple levels and lead the Youngbloodz women’s 7s side to the national tournament this summer.
Sutcliffe, an Englishman, played rugby for Winnington Park RUFC in Cheshire and Harrogate RUFC in Yorkshire before moving to Minnesota in 2011. Like Osborne and Baleirara, Sutcliffe got his coaching start at the high school level before coaching at the senior level. Sutcliffe is an assistant coach for Youngbloodz women’s 7s side and the head coach for Metropolis 7s side that placed 3rd this summer. His primary focus will be on the back line.
Sourced from Minnesota Valkyries website