Briscoe to help Cods
AFTER an off-season of uncertainty, title-winning Risdon Cup coach Gary Briscoe has parted company with the USQ club and will link with the Condamine Cods in year's Downs Rugby competition.
Briscoe helped guide USQ to a memorable 2011 premiership victory, capped with the team's 56-27 grand final win over Toowoomba Rangers.
But after three years with Saints - which also included a 2010 grand final appearance against Bears - Briscoe has stepped aside due to work commitments.
"I've reluctantly had to move on," Briscoe said yesterday.
"I'm 350km away now - out in the Wandoan and Jackson region - which makes it a 700km round trip to Toowoomba.
"I still have a reasonable trip to Condamine as well, but I'm keen to stay involved in Downs rugby and I'm looking forward now to working with Andrew Hirst (coach) at the Cods.
"I'm not going there looking to change anything. I just want to offer anything I can to help the club."
Condamine finished sixth under Hirst last year after winning through to the semi-finals the previous season.
"After enjoying three magic years with everyone at Uni, this will be a different type of challenge," Briscoe said.
"Condamine have a lot of experienced players with a lot of knowledge and a lot of skills and I can't see whey they can't be a force this season.
"It's also a club with a good culture which I really like about it."
Hirst said Briscoe promises to bring a "missing" element to the Cods.
"It's great to have Gary joining us," Hirst said.
"It's going to be a big help for me and I'm certain it will have a really positive influence on the club.
"I'm sure Gary can provide us with a technical edge which he can convey to the guys.
"As a club we have a lot of strengths but this might just provide us with that added factor."
Condamine hosts Toowoomba Rangers in the opening Risdon Cup round on March 31.