New Zealand Rugby on Tuesday announced that Scott “Razor” Robertson will take over as All Blacks coach after this year’s World Cup, tapping him to lead a once all-conquering side that has been plagued by on- and off-field woes.
Crusaders boss Robertson will take up one of the sport’s most coveted jobs after the tournament in France — impressing selectors despite questions over his lack of pedigree at the international level.
“Robertson has been appointed for four years from 2024 through to the end of the 2027 Rugby World Cup,” New Zealand Rugby said.
— Sky Sport NZ (@skysportnz) March 21, 2023
He replaces Ian Foster, who has had a troubled tenure, losing a Test series at home to Ireland and tumbling down to third in the world rankings.
The messy recruitment process has angered Foster, who urged New Zealand Rugby to hold off until the World Cup was finished because it would be too distracting.
It has been a rare period of upheaval for the three-time world cup winners who crashed out of the 2019 tournament in Japan in the semi-finals.
Robertson was chosen ahead of current Japan coach Jamie Joseph — the selectors crediting his unparalleled success at the domestic level and his reputation for coaching innovation.
“His coaching record speaks for itself in terms of success, but what came through strongly during the interview process was his innovative approach to the game, his passion for his players, and his desire to add to the All Blacks legacy,” chief executive Mark Robinson said.
Robertson has led New Zealand’s domestic Canterbury Crusaders side to six Super Rugby titles since 2017, but has never coached a national team.
Many of New Zealand’s most successful former coaches, such as Graham Henry and Steve Hansen, worked overseas before entering the All Blacks setup.
The Crusaders benefit from one of the most fertile rugby nurseries on the planet, and some pundits have questioned whether Robertson’s influence has been overstated.
© Agence France-Presse
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