Newcastle prop Micky Ward sets sights on coaching role
Newcastle Falcons forward Micky Ward has said he wants to move into coaching at Kingston Park, as he prepares for his testimonial on Thursday.
The 32-year-old prop will bow out of professional rugby after the match, having combined playing duties with a part-time coaching role this season.
"I'm hoping to be on here still as a scrummage coach," the front-row veteran told BBC Newcastle.
"I've enjoyed my first year coaching. Next year I'll be full-time hopefully."
The Wallsend-born player, who operated at both loose-head and tight-head during his time at Kingston Park, has experienced the highs of Premiership and Powergen Cup success, along with the recent battles against relegation during more than a decade at the club.
"I joined the academy in 1997 and I got my first professional contract in 1999," said Ward.
"There have been so many influences, [former coach] Steve Black has been a big influence just because of his motivation.
"I've come across some great coaches in scrummaging - there was Andrew Blades and George Graham, to name just a couple."
Ward made 274 appearances, 179 as a starting player, for the Falcons and scored seven tries.