Todd appointed Defence Coach
Edinburgh Rugby is delighted to announce the appointment of Michael Todd as the club’s new Defence Coach.
Todd, 32, joins from Queensland Reds where he has been in charge of the Super Rugby side’s defence since 2020, during which time they finished as runners-up (2020) and winners (2021) of the Covid-condensed Super Rugby AU competition, and were beaten quarter-finalists of the reunited Super Rugby championship earlier this year.
Todd is currently coaching with Australia ‘A’ as part of this summer’s Pacific Nations Cup competition where he is again leading on defence as the up-and-coming Wallabies face off against Samoa, Fiji and Tonga.
The highly-regarded specialist will link up with Edinburgh later this month as the capital side begin pre-season preparations for the upcoming 2022/23 campaign, which will see Edinburgh Rugby return to the Heineken Champions Cup and aim to build on last season’s quarter-final finish to the URC.
Todd said: “I’m very excited to join Edinburgh Rugby, which has such a rich and long history. I can’t wait to get started and contribute to the team and the club.
“I’m really grateful to Mike [Blair] for allowing me the opportunity to work with him and his team.
“I can’t wait to work alongside the coaches who are doing an incredible job. I’m just so keen to get started and help contribute and develop a team that is on the rise.”
Born and raised in Harare, Zimbabwe – which he represented at age-grade level – Todd moved to Queensland in 2009.
He studied sports and exercise science at University of the Sunshine Coast from 2011 to 2013, where he played as a forward for the University side Barbarians, helping them win the Sunshine Coast competition in 2011.
Todd joined the Reds as a Performance Analyst in 2013 before making the move north to join Munster for the 2014/15 season as Assistant Performance Analyst.
Todd returned to Queensland a year later to take up the role of Senior Analyst at the Reds in 2015, where he held the position – while working as Forwards and Contact Coach at NRC side Queensland Country – up until June 2020.
Entering the Covid 19-restricted 2020 season, Todd was promoted to the position of Queensland Reds Assistant/Defence Coach, working under Head Coach Brad Thorn.
The former analyst excelled in the position and developed a robust defence that conceded 150 and 170 points in the regular seasons of 2020 and 2021 (the league’s second-best defence on both occasions) en route to the Super Ruby AU title in his second season.
The Reds finished seventh in this year’s Super Rugby Pacific competition and were ultimately knocked out in the Quarter-Final stages by eventual Champions Crusaders in Christchurch.
Todd continued: “My young family and I are so excited to be come over and fully immerse ourselves in the culture and experience as much as we can in Scotland.
“I have lived in a few different places around the world but this will be the first time for my wife and daughter to live somewhere outside of Australia – we can’t wait.
“It's always daunting stepping into a new environment and challenge but it's something I've wanted to do for a while now.
“A new league brings new challenges and learnings, while the Heineken Champions Cup is the pinnacle of rugby in the Northern Hemisphere – who wouldn't want to be a part of that?”
On his appointment, Head Coach Mike Blair said: “We are absolutely delighted to have been able to bring someone of Michael’s expertise into the club.
“It was a lengthy process to make sure we got the right man and we believe that the knowledge he holds, his growth mind set and his desire to improve individuals within a defensive system, will fit our environment really well.”
Edinburgh Rugby Managing Director Douglas Struth, added: “Michael [Todd] is a real up-and-coming specialist in the coaching world so we’re delighted to secure his services ahead of the upcoming season.
“Having worked closely with Mike [Blair] during the appointment process, we’ve both been really impressed by Michael’s attitude and excitement for the role. He’ll be a great fit within our already talented coaching team.
“We’re really looking forward to welcoming Michael to Edinburgh later this month and I know he’ll be champing at the bit to settle in, meet the management and players and begin preparations for another hugely exciting campaign.”