New Esher boss Smith won't give up on playing return

First published in Esher Wimbledon Guardian: Photograph of the Author by

Harlequins centre Ollie Smith will continue to train with the Premiership champions despite being officially unveiled as head coach at National Division One side Esher, writes Stuart Amos.

The 29-year-old former British & Irish Lion is battling back from a severe knee injury suffered in 2010 and remains intent on resuming his playing career.

Smith, who coached Esher’s backs last season, will be assisted by former Saracens and Toulon lock Kris Chesney.

“The aim is still to get back playing, but this was an opportunity I could not turn down,” he said.

“When I’m fit enough I will decide whether I want to try to play at the top level.

“This is a special club and I am hugely excited about what lies ahead.”

Chesney, who started for Toulon in the Amlin Cup final at the Stoop last week, has joined as player-assistant coach.

“It’s a club I’ve always had a high regard for and it’s a great place for me to resume my career in England and help take the club forward,” he added.

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