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Rassie Erasmus becomes head coach of South Africa

By Ian Cameron
Jacques Nienaber, Head Coach of South Africa, speaks with Rassie Erasmus, Coach of South Africa, prior to the Rugby World Cup France 2023 Quarter Final match between France and South Africa at Stade de France on October 15, 2023 in Paris, France. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

In a statement to South African media on Sunday, Rassie Erasmus confirmed his return as the head coach of South Africa, the role he held when the team claimed the 2019 World Cup.


Erasmus will take over from long time collaborator, Jacques Nienaber, following this year’s successful Rugby World Cup campaign.

Nienaber led the Springboks to their second consecutive victory and will move to a new position at Leo Cullen’s Leinster.

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Bulls’ Jake White post-match press conference v Zebre

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Bulls’ Jake White post-match press conference v Zebre

Assistant coach Felix Jones will be making his way to Steve Borthwick’s England setup.

Erasmus, who guided the team to World Cup glory four years ago, transitioned to the position of South Africa’s director of rugby but continued to influence the team.

Their recent World Cup victory, a historic fourth title, was sealed with a 12-11 win over New Zealand in the final last month.

Reports from South African newspaper Rapport confirm Erasmus’s commitment to take over Nienaber’s responsibilities, with an eye on the unprecedented goal of securing a third consecutive World Cup triumph in 2027.


Erasmus is celebrated in South Africa for his innovative coaching style, tactical expertise, and ability to maximize his players’ potential, yet he has also faced criticism, notably for his video critique of Australian referee Nic Berry in the 2021 series against the British & Irish Lions, resulting in a match-day ban from World Rugby.

Additionally, his social media posts criticizing opponents have drawn scrutiny.


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CT 225 days ago

Imagine three consecutive world cups ,untouchable.

JL 226 days ago

I see that RugbyPass and Ben Smith is attacking Rassie again. It’s quite bizarre that a “news” organisation wholly owned by World Rugby continues to unleash a troll account to undermine the achievements of the first transformed South African Rugby team. No one has ever seen Ben Smith in person, or has ever engaged with him at live games. He is not on podcasts and is not a good faith member of the community. Many people suspect it’s a burner account run by Jamie Wall or backroom staff at RP. A lot of Black South Africans are also beginning to sense that there is a racial tinge to Ben Smith’s RP sanctioned attacks on Rassie and South Africa. Hopefully this gets addressed as we have many more years of Rassie to look forward to, and hopefully not much more racial trolling…

Sam 226 days ago

They say third time lucky, and it is doable 🌟Lets go Bokke for a hattrick.

Mdu3 226 days ago

Ŵinning for the third time is very possible under Rassie's stewardship

Snash 226 days ago

cant wait for Razor v Rassie and Irish tour of SA next year.

Petrus 227 days ago

Luck is a funny thing. The Bokke have had plenty of it with 3 one point wins at this RWC and a disallowed All Black (Aaron Smith) try in the final due to an error by officials. Same luck in 1995 when Merthens missed the droppie in regulation time by a whisker allowing Joel to kick a lucky sitter in OT.

Graham 227 days ago

What is going to be amazing is how Rassie is going to reconstruct this team. The one thing he is not when it comes to coaching is sentimental. He will not stick with players out of loyalty. they will have to be the best. Stand by for a Williams, Libbok, Esterhuizen, Moodie, Kolbe Arendse and Willemse back line.

Ace 227 days ago

How long is Nienaber’s contract in Ireland?

If it’s less than four years, I predict that RassieNaber might be reunited for the Boks in 2027…

It should be patently obvious by now that Rassie plays the long game. The very long game …

Henrik 227 days ago

The Legend now faces the perhaps biggest challenge of them all: re-creating another winning Boks-side …. wishing him the greatest of all lucks

Bob Marler 227 days ago

First SA wins the WC. And now this. It’s too much. I can’t take any more great news.

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