Pro12: Blues coach Gareth Baber takes Hong Kong Sevens job

Gareth Baber is to become Hong Kong Sevens head coach after leaving his role as Cardiff Blues attack/backs coach.

The 41-year-old's impending December 2013 exit was announced in September.

Wales Rugby League coach Iestyn Harris is among those linked with succeeding Baber at Blues.

Baber replaces fellow Welshman Dai Rees in the sevens role as the latter becomes Hong Kong's head of technical development and performance.

Rees said of ex-Wales Sevens and Under-20 coach Baber: "Gareth will direct our senior men's, women's and youth programmes at elite level.

"With his international background and coaching and playing experience at the highest levels, Gareth was the ideal fit for the role," said Rees.

Baber is a former Newport Gwent Dragons, Cardiff, Llanelli, Aberavon, Pontypridd and Bristol scrum-half, who also won a Blue for Oxford University.

Rees left his role as Newport Gwent Dragons assistant coach in 2008 to become Hong Kong's head coach.

He now graduates to a senior backroom role, saying in a Hong Kong RU statement: "It will be a bit strange as it will be the first time that I have not been hands on in terms of coaching in over 30 years.

"So in that respect it is a big change.

"My challenge is to now support a group of staff and players at the HKSI (Hong Kong Sports Institute), led by Gareth Baber and [Women's Sevens coach] Anna Richards, that we hope will help us qualify for the next Olympics."

Rees has also overseen the Hong Kong Sevens team and will take charge of their bid to beat Japan to the Asian Sevens Series title in the Singapore finale on 9 and 10 November.