The recent All Blacks’ coaching appointments highlight a rather worrying concern for New Zealand (NZ) rugby; the lack of capable, experienced coaches. Many of NZ’s best and most qualified coaches are now plying their trade offshore, such as Robbie Deans, Warren Gatland, Vern Cotter and Joe Schmidt. I hope that Steve Hansen turned to former Chiefs coach Ian Foster as his assistant coach because he is an attack-coaching genius, rather than he just happened to be about the only guy available. His record with the Chiefs tends to suggest more the latter, but I hope I am wrong. Read more
Jake White is one of those rare beasts; a Springbok coach that is actually quite likeable. In fact I think it’s fair to say he is by far the most popular South African coach in NZ since Nick Mallett, and that is with him being successful. It’s easy for NZers to be pleased when Pieter de Villiers is the Springbok coach because he says lots of stupid things we can all laugh at and probably kept South Africa from being as competitive as they should have been.
But White is generally held in high regard in NZ because he seems like a reasonable bloke, gives intelligent answers to questions put to him and doesn’t go accusing the referee of nefarious deeds every time he loses a match. Obviously there were times during his four years in charge of the ‘Boks when he was pissed off, but everyone has bad days and generally speaking White carries himself very well. Read more