'Ambitious' ex-Wallaby to call it quits in surprise move

‘Ambitious’ ex-Wallaby to call it quits in surprise move

Stephen Hoiles will stand down as Randwick coach at the end of the season but won’t be making a sales pitch for the Waratahs job.

The former Wallabies loose forward told Randwick players after training on Thursday night that he would step aside at the end of the 2024 Shute Shield campaign.

Hoiles led Randwick to a drought breaking title in his first season at the helm last year.

Watch all the action from the 2024 Shute Shield season with every match ad free, live and and on demand on Stan Sport

The ‘Galloping Greens’ are Australia’s most famous rugby club but hadn’t won Sydney’s first grade competition since 2004 with a team that featured Hoiles.

The 42-year-old said he remained ambitious with his coaching career but did not have another job lined up.

“That’s why I wanted to tell the players – I had heard a couple of rumours about some options overseas and none of those are true. I’ve got no commitment anywhere,” Hoiles told Wide World of Sports.

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“I haven’t agreed to anyone. I’m nowhere further down the line working out what’s next from a rugby point of view. But in my mind, the right thing to do was to tell Randwick now. I love it.

“It’s the only club I’ve ever played for, but it’s just a big commitment. It just takes a bit of a toll on the family.”

Hoiles and wife Lara have four children and he is the co-founder of health and wellness centre Recoverie in addition to his Stan Sport and Nine media commitments.

NEW PODCAST! Michael Atkinson and Sam Worthington tackle the biggest stories in Australian rugby including the Waratahs woes

A member of NSW’s only Super Rugby triumph in 2014, Hoiles admitted coaching the Waratahs one day would be a dream job.

But he said there had been no conversations about a potential role with the reeling club – who are in wooden spoon position and whose coach, Darren Coleman, is off contract at the end of the season.

Hoiles was an assistant to Coleman at the LA Giltinis – who won the Major League Rugby title in their first season of existence in 2021.

Hoiles then took the Giltinis reins when Coleman moved to Sydney to lead the Waratahs in 2022.

“There is no job at the moment,” he said.

“Would I like to coach the Waratahs one day? Yeah, absolutely.

“But a good mate of mine is the current coach. I’ve had no contact. Like everyone, I’m just curious to see what happens over the next couple of months for the club.

“Are they going to get a head coach first? Are they going to get a director of rugby or a general manager? I’m still ambitious in the coaching world, definitely.

“But I’ve been conscious with what I’ve done after rugby, to make sure that there are other avenues. It’s about what’s best for the family. I want to keep coaching and I will keep coaching.

“But if something doesn’t work out for 2025 – that’s not going to make or break my coaching ambition, that’s for sure.”

In the meantime, there is more silverware to win.

Randwick sit sixth on the Shute Shield ladder with a 4-3 record.

Next up is an away date with fourth placed Manly on Saturday.

“Last year was a really rewarding year for the club,” Hoiles said.

“I loved it. Not many teams have been able to do that two years in a row and that’s the challenge, to try.”

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