Jason Ryles, the former New South Wales and Australian Test forward, has turned down a four-year contract to become the head coach for the St George Illawarra Dragons. Instead, he will join Melbourne Storm as an assistant next year, a move that has come as a surprise to the Dragons officials. The news was delivered an hour after the Dragons stated that the talks with Ryles were progressing.
Ryles is currently serving as the assistant coach to Trent Robinson at the Roosters. However, he will resign from his position there to join Craig Bellamy’s coaching staff for the 2022 season. Bellamy, who will continue coaching with the Storm next year, is expected to pass the baton to Ryles in the future.
This move by Ryles has put the Dragons in a tough spot, as they now need to find a replacement for their previous head coach, Anthony Griffin. Ryan Carr has been appointed as the interim coach, but the team still requires a permanent replacement. The Dragons officials will now have to start their search anew, with Dean Young and Ben Hornby emerging as the frontrunners for the job.