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New Zealand Rugby confirm Joe Schmidt's appointment as All Blacks selector

By Alex McLeod
Ian Foster and Joe Schmidt prior to the RWC quarterfinal between New Zealand and Ireland. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

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New Zealand Rugby [NZR] has announced the appointment of former Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt as an independent All Blacks selector.


Schmidt joins the All Blacks in place of long-standing selector Grant Fox, who will stand down from his position following next year’s mid-year tests against Ireland.

News of Schmidt’s arrival at the All Blacks comes in the wake of reports from various media outlets that linked the Kiwi coach to the role.

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The 56-year-old’s position with the New Zealand national side coincides with his new part-time role with the Blues as a support coach for next year’s inaugural edition of Super Rugby Pacific.

Regarded as one of the best coaches in rugby, Schmidt joins the All Blacks with a wealth of experience to his name, with much of his reputation forged while at the helm of Ireland between 2013 and 2019.

During that span, he guided the men from the Emerald Isle to their first two victories over the All Blacks, three Six Nations titles and one Grand Slam, and to top spot on the Word Rugby rankings two years ago.

Prior to that, Schmidt enjoyed a title-laden spell in charge of Leinster between 2010 and 2013, and has previously held assistant coach roles at Clermont, the Blues and Bay of Plenty.


That level of experience excites All Blacks head coach Ian Foster, who said he is looking forward to welcoming Schmidt into the side next year.

“Joe will bring a wealth of New Zealand and international experience into the role, so we are delighted to have him join us,” Foster said in a statement.

“He will work closely with me and Plums [All Blacks assistant coach John Plumtree] on selections but his insights will be valuable in other areas as well, so we look forward to having him join us.”

Foster also paid tribute to Fox’s contribution as All Blacks selector, a role he has held since 2011.


“Foxy has been huge for me personally and for the team as a whole and we were so grateful to have him involved for longer than expected.

“He says now is the time for him to fully focus on his family and business interests.  We will farewell him closer to the time when he finishes up next year.”

Schmidt, meanwhile, said he is relishing the chance to work in an All Blacks environment and assist Foster and Plumtree where possible.

“It’s humbling to be involved and I’m looking forward to learning more about the players and the All Blacks environment and helping out as best I can,” he said.


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