Australian Jillaroos legend Karyn Murphy will finish up at the NRL's integrity unit in the coming months and take over as head coach of the Titans NRLW side, the club confirmed on Wednesday.
Murphy, a former 25-year servant in the police force who has spent eight years at the NRL overseeing off-field matters, will return to Queensland to begin a new full-time director of female rugby league role and oversee the Titans' NRLW program.
The former Australian captain replaces Jamie Feeney in the leading coaches role and will become the second female to coach an NRLW side after former Kiwi Fern Luisa Avaiki did so at the Warriors for two seasons in 2018-19.
"Karyn is an icon of our game and someone who is highly respected for what she has achieved and we are thrilled that she will be joining us," Titans CEO Steve Mitchell said in a statement.
"As the only female head coach in NRLW competition, we believe Karyn’s work in this space will provide will inspire new and developing female coaches within the game.
"Having Karyn dedicated full-time to our programs will allow us to grow both our high performance and pathway programs, while also allowing her the time to build strong relationships with our players, our elite youth and their families."
Prestigious medal named in Murphy's honour
Murphy has an extensive resume as a player and assistant coach at the State of Origin and international level after retiring from rugby league in 2015.
She made her international debut in 1998, playing 27 Tests which included World Cup success in 2013, and is current assistant coach of the Australian side alongside Feeney and Jillaroos coach Brad Donald.
She is regarded as one of the greatest women's players to ever lace on the boot and in 2018 was given the ultimate recognition with the player of the NRLW grand final each year named in her honour.
Murphy's next task when she arrives on the Gold Coast will be to assemble a competitive squad after a solid start to their NRLW history. She will be assisted by former Storm premiership-winner Matt Geyer in the club's second season.
The Titans reached the semi-finals in their inaugural season earlier this year before being knocked out by the Dragons at Leichhardt Oval for a fourth place finish.
NRLW clubs are currently looking to lock in their talent for the 2022 season and have until the end of May to sign at least 22 of 24 players under a new $350,000 salary cap in place.
The fifth NRLW season is expected to get underway in August with a mini pre-season set after players complete their state competition duties following State of Origin.
NRLW Match Highlights: Titans v Broncos
NRL.com understands a host of players from several clubs will move between seasons with the Titans and Knights among the big movers in recruitment.
Gold Coast struggled with depth in the halves during their first campaign and are looking to boost their stocks in that area by pulling off a major coup.
Newcastle have agreed to terms with at least five Roosters for next season including Jillaroos lock Hannah Southwell, who is expected to return home to the Hunter after four seasons in Sydney.