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Wests Tigers appoint Tim Sheens as Head of Football Performance

Wests Tigers are pleased to confirm that Tim Sheens has been appointed as the club’s Head of Football Performance, effective immediately.

Sheens, who remains the longest-serving coach in Wests Tigers history and guided the club to its maiden Premiership in 2005, will take up the newly-created role aimed at supporting pathway development and planning, recruitment, football administration, club culture and ensuring sustainability in all aspects of the organisation.

The role will provide additional support to the club’s football program, while also building advocacy, awareness and investment in the club’s commercial and community programs.

The return of Sheens in this new role, as well as the recent appointment of Matthew Betsey and Brett Kimmorley in the pathways space, further demonstrates the club’s ongoing commitment and investment to delivering a successful football program.

With over 750 games of coaching experience at both first-grade and representative level as well as a strong business acumen having spent time in football administration, Wests Tigers are delighted to welcome Sheens back to the club in this new role.

“On behalf of the Board of Directors at Wests Tigers, I’d like to say how pleased we are to have Tim back on board with the club,” Wests Tigers Chair Lee Hagipantelis said.

“The appointment of Tim, coupled with the recent appointments in our pathways programs, affirms the Board’s commitment to engaging the best people who will add value to our organisation in promoting and developing the game of rugby league from grass roots to the elite level.

Tim is revered as part of Wests Tigers’ history and his appointment in this new role will make him a rich part of our future.

Wests Tigers Chair Lee Hagipantelis

“In the history of the game, very few have enjoyed Tim’s experience and gravitas and what he will be able to bring to Wests Tigers will greatly enhance the club and create opportunities to be the best that we can be. 

“On behalf of the entire Board, I welcome Tim Sheens home to Wests Tigers and very much look forward to working with him as we continue our path to sustained success as a club.”

Sheens said he was looking forward to returning to the club and making an impact.

“I am very much looking forward to returning to Wests Tigers as the new Head of Football Performance,” Sheens said. “This role is extremely exciting as it allows me to work and utilise my experience, especially around pathways, development and talent identification.”

Wests Tigers CEO Justin Pascoe said Sheens would be a tremendous asset for the club.

“It’s very pleasing to welcome Tim back to Wests Tigers and see him formally involved with the club again,” Pascoe said.

“Tim knows what it means to be Wests Tigers and has played a major role in shaping all aspects of this club — both on and off the field — to what it is today.

“Having Tim take on this new role will significantly strengthen our football department as a whole. We firmly believe that adding Tim’s experience, knowledge and insight into the game of rugby league will be of huge benefit to Wests Tigers in ensuring sustainability in all aspects of the organisation.”

Wests Tigers Coach Michael Maguire said he was pleased to see the club continue to invest heavily in its pathways programs — adding to the recent appointment of Betsey and Kimmorley.

“I’m looking forward to Tim, Matt and Brett continuing to build on the strong foundations that have been developed in our pathways programs,” Maguire said.

“It’s been very pleasing to see the work that has been done in this area already to build longevity and sustained success at the club and it’s great to see the desire and commitment across our entire organisation to ensuring that continues.”

Sheens played 166 games for Penrith from 1970 to 1982 before transitioning into coaching at the Panthers at the start of the 1984 season. He would take Penrith to their first finals series the following year before moving to Canberra, where he would lead the Raiders to their maiden Premiership win in 1989, followed by further success in 1990 and 1994.

After coaching 101 games for North Queensland from 1997 to 2001, Sheens joined Wests Tigers in 2002 and would go on to become the club’s longest-serving and most successful coach of all time — leading the club to its maiden Premiership in 2005.

He would finish as coach of Wests Tigers in 2012 having spent time coaching New South Wales City Origin and the Australian national side, where he would remain until 2015.

Sheens then moved into an administrative role with Salford Red Devils before returning to the coaching arena with Hull KR (2017-19) and Widnes Vikings (2020).

Sheens was inducted as a Life Member of Wests Tigers in 2015, becoming the first non-player at the time to be named as a Life Member of the club.