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Ian Foster nominated for World Rugby Coach of the Year

By Finn Morton
New Zealand Head Coach Ian Foster looks on during the pre match warm up ahead of the Rugby World Cup France 2023 match between New Zealand and Uruguay at Parc Olympique on October 5, 2023 in Lyon, France. (Photo by Craig Mercer/MB Media/Getty Images)

A lot has changed in 15 months for All Blacks coach Ian Foster. With New Zealand’s disastrous run of five losses from six starts now a distant memory, Foster has been nominated for World Rugby Coach of the Year.

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Coach Foster led the All Blacks to another Rugby Championship crown earlier this year, as well as the retention of the prestigious Bledisloe Cup against the Wallabies. But Foster’s finest hour came at the Rugby World Cup.

The All Blacks had been branded the “weakest” New Zealand team in history before the World Cup, but now they’re off to the final. New Zealand overcame Ireland in a thrilling quarter-final before recording a commanding win over Argentina a week later.

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New Zealand are off to the big dance. The All Blacks will face defending champions the Springboks in the final at Stade de France, with coach Jacques Nienaber also receiving a nomination.

Ireland’s Andy Farrell is also in the running after guiding Ireland to a staggering 17-Test unbeaten run, while Fiji’s Simon Raiwalui is the other contender.

World Rugby Chairman Sir Bill Beaumont said: “All those nominated today deserve not only our congratulations but also our thanks for everything they have contributed, on and off the field, to inspire fans and players worldwide, driving rugby forward in 2023 in line with our sport’s values.

Knockout

New Zealand
South Africa
11 - 12
Final
Argentina
New Zealand
6 - 44
SF1
England
South Africa
15 - 16
SF2
Wales
Argentina
17 - 29
QF1
Ireland
New Zealand
24 - 28
QF2
England
Fiji
30 - 24
QF3
France
South Africa
28 - 29
QF4

“The strength of rugby is its players, coaches, officials and volunteers, and these shortlists provide a vivid snapshot of a sport that is thriving globally in its 200th year.

Knockout

New Zealand
South Africa
11 - 12
Final
Argentina
New Zealand
6 - 44
SF1
England
South Africa
15 - 16
SF2
Wales
Argentina
17 - 29
QF1
Ireland
New Zealand
24 - 28
QF2
England
Fiji
30 - 24
QF3
France
South Africa
28 - 29
QF4

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“One day after we crown the Rugby World Cup 2023 champions, we look forward once again to uniting our global family and presenting a wider cast of winners with the ultimate accolades in our sport – the World Rugby Awards.”

The award winners will be revealed on Sunday, October 29 – the day after the Rugby World Cup final – at the Opera Garnier in Paris.

The nominees for the other categories are:

World Rugby Women’s Sevens Player of the Year in partnership with HSBC

  • Michaela Blyde (New Zealand)
  • Maddison Levi (Australia)
  • Tyla Nathan-Wong (New Zealand)
  • Reapi Ulunisau (Fiji)

World Rugby Men’s Sevens Player of the Year in partnership with HSBC

  • Leroy Carter (New Zealand)
  • Rodrigo Isgro (Argentina)
  • Marcos Moneta (Argentina)
  • Akuila Rokolisoa (New Zealand)

International Rugby Players Men’s Try of the Year

  • Duhan van der Merwe (Scotland, v England on 4 February)
  • Damian Penaud (France, v Ireland on 11 February)
  • Hugo Keenan (Ireland, France on 11 February)
  • Vinaya Habosi (Fiji, v Georgia on 1 October)

World Rugby Men’s 15s Breakthrough Player of the Year in partnership with Tudor

  • Louis Bielle-Biarrey (France)
  • Manie Libbok (South Africa)
  • Mark Tele’a (New Zealand)
  • Tamaiti Williams (New Zealand)

World Rugby Men’s 15s Player of the Year in partnership with Mastercard

  • Bundee Aki (Ireland)
  • Antoine Dupont (France)
  • Eben Etzebeth (South Africa)
  • Ardie Savea (New Zealand)

Other categories being awarded on Sunday, 29 October

  • Vernon Pugh Award for Distinguished Service
  • International Rugby Players Special Merit Award
  • Rugby for All Award
  • World Rugby Referee Award
  • World Rugby Men’s 15s Dream Team of the Year in partnership with Capgemini

Categories awarded following the conclusion of WXV

  • World Rugby Women’s 15s Player of the Year in partnership with Mastercard
  • World Rugby Women’s 15s Dream Team of the Year in partnership with Capgemini
  • World Rugby Women’s 15s Breakthrough Player of the Year in partnership with Tudor
  • International Rugby Players Women’s Try of the Year
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Comments

30 Comments
D
Dave 262 days ago

Have to hand it to fozzy, I haven't seen any other coach cop so much verbal abuse without reacting in a major way, on a personal side he has maintained his class, and self-respect in front of the cameras. It is odd when they allocate it to coach of the year and not coaching team when the rest of the team have so much involvement and input and say, as to whether the team is successful or not.

B
Bob Marler 263 days ago

So basically, whoever wins on Saturday between SA and NZ gets world coach of the year?

Holding thumbs for Eben. Savea too. Although I think Eben will win it.

T
Tristan 263 days ago

Having the ABs make it to the final is an over achievement in my book, so hats off and well done to Fozzie, coaches and team for that. However this team was adrift last year and the only records were unwanted ones. New assistant coaches and changed selections since then. New props all forced due to injury, Fozzie actually said he wouldn't select Jordie at 12 but injuries forced it, which put BB into 15 full time and gave Mounga a proper run at 10. While I congratulate the team and Fozzie for getting to the final it doesn't really change my opinion that he wasn't the right guy for the job to start with. Best coach in the world? Sorry but no chance.

D
David 263 days ago

Rather delicious headline to be made; “Winning Coach of the Year, the Rugby Championship and making the RWC Final not enough to save Ian Fosters Job”. Submit your CVs online if you too enjoy being abused by the NRU and fellow kiwis. Imagine if the same levels of excellence were expected of the cast of that fantasy lobby group called The Breakdown..🤣

j
johnz 263 days ago

Schmidt and Ryan have made the biggest differences to this ABs team, making far bigger impacts than Foz has made by himself. In fact Ryan’s immediate impact when coming on board was remarkable. Foz has improved and is running a happy team, don’t get me wrong. But the fact these fundamental changes were forced on him, rather than him making them from his own strategic decisions and initiative, counts him out for me.

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