EXPERIENCED coach Dean Birrell has been appointed as Paul Gore’s successor at Oxford City Stars.

The interim boss was unable to continue at Oxpens next season due to family commitments and stood down earlier this month.

Birrell is only, but 44 has 15 years under his belt at Chelmsford Chieftains and Streatham Redskins in coaching and director of hockey roles.

The Scot, who also played for Chelmsford and Peterborough Pirates, had taken a break from the game, but was the stand-out candidate for the role, which will continue the close link between the club’s junior and senior set-ups.

He said: “It’s great to have joined a good club that has a clear strategy and vision and I am looking forward to getting started.

“After a spell out of the game I’m delighted to have been given an opportunity to return.

“Oxford has a great core group of players, a desire to develop youngsters and a five-year plan.

“It is a challenge and an opportunity to build something and that’s what attracted me.”

Stars’ director Greig Box Turnbull said: “Dean has bags of experience and has achieved so much in the sport.

“He is highly respected and is a fantastic appointment for the Stars. I’m sure he will make a real impact and help build the club.”

Fellow director Jo Mundy said: “We had a lot of interest in the role and some good people get in touch, but Dean stood out for us.

“We believe he is the right fit for the Stars, he has an excellent track record and we’re delighted to have him on board.”