Brad Mooar admits he is “torn” over whether to join Ian Foster’s All Blacks set-up after the Scarlets head coach was offered the chance to return to New Zealand at the end of the Northern Hemisphere season.
Mooar has made a big impact since arriving in Llanelli in July but new All Blacks head coach Foster wants him as his attack assistant.
Discussions between New Zealand Rugby and the Scarlets are at an early stage, with Mooar yet to decide whether to stay in west Wales or return to the Southern Hemisphere and cut short the three-year deal he signed in Llanelli. An announcement isn’t expected until the New Year.
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Asked if coaching the country of his birth would be too good an offer to turn down, Mooar said: “I’m torn, yes. This is tough and both options are outstanding.
“It would be a hell of a proud moment and it’s humbling to be in the conversation. The question has been asked, we are grown adults, and we are having responsible conversations and things will pan out.
“We don’t know, do we? I’m here and we’re doing a great job with the group. They’re working for each other and it’s great. We’ll just have to keep the conversations going.”
The Scarlets confirmed in a statement last weekend that former Crusaders assistant Mooar had been approached by New Zealand and the two parties were in conversation. Mooar is likely to stay at the Scarlets for the rest of the 2019-20 season whatever he decides.
Scarlets are determined to maximise the compensation they would receive from New Zealand Rugby should Mooar move on, given he is only five months into his deal.
Scarlets showed no sign yesterday of Mooar’s future distracting them, hammering Bayonne 46-5 in the European Challenge Cup, their eighth win in 11 games under the Kiwi.
“What you saw [against Bayonne] is the ‘we’ in our club is a hell of a lot bigger and stronger than the ‘me’,” Mooar said.
“The focus will remain. It’s a wonderful place to be here and we are enjoying a great rise. The way we’re playing the game and the fan base means this is bigger than one person. It’s an exciting time.
“I doff my hat to the boys and staff, and the way everyone has pulled together has been outstanding. We have set a vision and are working together.”
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