England Touch has announced that Sammie Phillips has been appointed as the Association’s Head of Elite Performance.
This new role within the England Touch High Performance team will see Phillips work closely with High Performance Director Anthony Atherton in leading the tactical and performance delivery of the high performance programme.
Another key part of Philips’ role will be to ensure that the frameworks are in place to maximise the knowledge, experience and skills of coaches and players alike as England Touch seeks to achieve its ambitions on the international stage.
She will directly manage the high performance coaching teams and oversee Nationals coaches.
Phillips has been involved with England Touch for over a decade, representing both the Women’s Open and Women’s 27s teams at multiple international tournaments, including three World Cups – where she coached England W27s to a third-placed finish – and three European Championships.
She is also a player, coach and development officer for the England West Region, and is a director of Thames Valley Vikings, a club she co-founded in 2005 and has become a hub for players, coaches and grassroots development in the Reading area.
Atherton is delighted that Phillips has accepted the position.
“Sammie has a vast amount of experience and it is fantastic that she has agreed to be our new Head of Elite Performance,” he said. “This role is key as we look to take our next steps towards achieving international success, starting with this summer’s European Championships in Nottingham.
“There is a massive amount of dedication and expertise across our high performance team, and one of Sammie’s tasks will be to make sure that best practice is shared across the programme.
“It’s an exciting time for England Touch and we’re looking forward to Sammie making a big contribution over the next couple of years.”
Phillips is relishing the opportunity.
“I am looking forward to the challenge of being the Head of Elite Performance at England Touch and working with our new High Performance Director, Anthony Atherton,” she commented. “I believe we are in a great position to not only see the growth of the game explode at grassroots level, especially in schools and colleges/universities but to also take off at elite level and really excel so that we can start to compete for the top prizes on the world stage.
“This is something I have always wanted to achieve as a player and as a coach and now I have an opportunity to help and support others to achieve their ambitions too, which is something I am very excited about.”