Former All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has announced his new job – and it’s not quite what many expected.
Hansen, who stepped down after the Rugby World Cup in Japan, has revealed a new role with Toyota Verblitz in Japan’s Top League.
He joins retired All Blacks captain Kieran Read at the side.
Hansen said he signed a contract with Toyota after the Rugby World Cup and the deal helps him stay in the game but also have time with family.
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“It’s an interesting role. It’s not one as head coach. it’s more as an advisor, mentor and requires me to be up there between somewhere five to 17 weeks a year,” Hansen revealed in a video on allblacks.com.
“The key thing is to go in there and work with the people who are in the environment. The head coach is Simon Cron who I know well and have a lot of time for. He’s going to be a very good coach. having the opportunity to help him grow is something that really excites me,” Hansen added.
“While we want a winning Toyota Verblitz team we also want an environment that people can be proud of. That is very much like a family. All the kind of things we’ve had in the All Blacks because I see that as what’s normal in any rugby team.”
“So if I can help in any way and help create that, then that will be important too,” he said.
Hansen took over as All Blacks head coach from Graham Henry in 2012 after spending eight years as his assistant.
In October England coach Eddie Jones inadvertently let slip that Hansen would join Verblitz after the World Cup.
“He is a great coach,” said Jones in a heartfelt tribute to Hansen shortly after England had knocked the All Blacks out of the World Cup with a comprehensive victory in the semifinal.
“I first coached against him in 1997. He was coaching the Crusaders and I was coaching the Brumbies. He is a great rugby man and he will go down as one of the great All Black coaches.
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