Former All Blacks coach Wayne Smith brought in by Black Ferns

The World Cup-winning coach will help New Zealand prepare for this year’s World Cup on home soil.

Wayne Smith has been appointed technical coach.
Wayne Smith has been appointed technical coach.
Image: Alamy Stock Photo

NEW ZEALAND’S WOMEN’S rugby team have called upon Wayne Smith as they prepare to host this year’s World Cup. 

The tournament is due to be held in October and November, having been rescheduled in 2021 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Black Ferns, who claimed the most recent World Cup in Ireland five years ago, face Australia, Wales and Scotland in Pool A.

Six months out from the first match, they have recruited 64-year-old Smith – regarded as one of the great rugby minds – as their technical coach.

As assistant coach of the All Blacks, he helped them to win back-to-back World Cups in 2011 and 2015.

“We’re in regular contact with Wayne and he saw an opportunity to put his hand up to support the current Black Ferns set up in what is a massive year with a home World Cup,” said New Zealand Rugby Head of High Performance, Mike Anthony.

“He’s already gone through reviewing their recent matches and has some good insights in where the team can grow.

We’ve seen some real excitement from the current management group and player leaders around what he will bring to the set up.”

Smith added: “My want to get involved with the Black Ferns started as a tribute to [women’s rugby stalwart] Laurie [O'Reilly] who was a great mate and mentor of mine. I indicated to him before he passed away that I would help the women’s rugby in whatever way I could and now I get the chance.

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“The coaching group is all on the same page around the type of game we need to play to win the World Cup; there is a lot of work to be done to get there but it is going to be exhilarating.”

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