World Cup-winning Springboks coach Jake White has addressed the talent drain from South Africa which stretches well beyond just the players. Numerous South African coaches are earning a living outside of their home country, something that the 2007 title-winning boss believes must be tackled as their intellectual property is a major loss.


Speaking in the latest interview in the Dean Allen series raising donations for the Chris Burger and Petro Jackson Players’ Fund, current Bulls director White, who himself has spent a large chunk of time abroad, claimed that more overseas coaches must be attracted back.

“We have an unbelievable ethos of rugby, a culture of rugby,” said White. “The one thing we can improve on is making sure we give them the best coaching we can through the system.

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RugbyPass brings you the second part of a conversation with Jake White on behalf of the Chris Burger and Petro Jackson Players’ Fund

“Allister Coetzee doesn’t coach (in South Africa anymore), Rudolf Straeuli doesn’t coach, Heyneke Meyer doesn’t coach. Johan Ackermann is coaching overseas, Frans Ludeke, who won two Super Rugby championships, is coaching overseas.

“We just need to get that calibre of coach back in South Africa, then we will have everything. We have the talent, ethos, history, the culture and we have never lost a World Cup final. That means there is something we do right. If we continue on that path, there is no reason why we won’t win another (World Cup title).”

Reflecting on his own time in charge of the Springboks, White paid tribute to the conveyor belt of talent that emerged from the 2002 IRB Junior World Championship title win which helped backbone the World Cup win five years later. 


“A lot of those guys went on to become the nucleus of the 2007 World Cup-winning team,” he said, claiming it was similar to 1995 when Kitch Christie relied upon a Transvaal backbone to win the World Cup. 

“People underestimate how good Kitch Christie was because he was a coach for such a short time with the Springboks. They forgot he coached Transvaal and it that Transvaal team he had the bulk of the Bok team

“Hennie le Roux, Francois Pienaar, Kobus Wiese, Hannes Strydom, Balie Swart, Japie Mulder… he coached the Boks via the Transvaal team for a long period of time.

“That was similar to my situation. That (2002) World Cup junior Bok team, most of those players graduated into the senior team. When we won the World Cup in 2007, I had basically coached them from 2002 – from when they were 19 until they were 25 or 26.”


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