Bok coach Coetzee by Friday?

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Why it’s taken so long for the rugby bosses to find the right candidate, only they will know; it should have been a fairly simple process of advertising the job, interviewing the strongest candidates and making an appointment.

Former Stormers boss Allister Coetzee, who’s been involved in Japanese club rugby for some time, appears to be the man SA Rugby have decided on to take the Boks forward. Only time will tell if it’s the right decision, but there is no doubt many will feel someone with greater attacking vision is required for the job.

Be that as it may, it’s high time the Bok management team was put into place so whoever is tasked with one of the hardest sports jobs in the country can start preparing for the international season.

The June Tests series against Ireland is just two months away. And there are plenty of decisions to be made by the new coach; whether that is Coetzee or outsider Rassie Erasmus.

Erasmus is almost certain to play a big role going forward, but in what capacity that is, no-one is quite sure. He and several former Bok management members, and a few others - including Johan van Graan, Louis Koen, Jacques Nienaber, Chean Roux and Ian Schwartz – were all at the Lions’ last Super Rugby game, against the Cheetahs at Ellis Park, and one can only guess why they were all there. Perhaps they were scouting out the talent, and there’s a good deal of that in the Lions team, or maybe they were there to have a word with Johan Ackermann?

Ackermann though has, according to Rapport newspaper, extended his contract with the Lions - of which the details will be announced today – so he will probably not form part of the new-look Bok coaching team. And, why’d he want to fill an assistant coach’s role anyway?

The success of the Lions has been down to Ackermann and his assistant Swys de Bruin allowing the players to “play it as they see it” and as an assistant coach at the Boks, it’s doubtful his philosophy, vision and brand of rugby will trump that of the head coach.

It will still be interesting though to see who of Meyer’s staff will remain in the new management team and who will come in from the outside.

Perhaps De Bruin, who’s worked wonders with the Lions’ backs and attacking play, is on the shopping list. Then again, if Coetzee is put in charge, he could very well turn to the men he knows well in Cape Town.

Coetzee might not tick all the boxes, but he’s experienced and he’s a fine coach and could, with the right men around him, be a big success. Most importantly right now though is the Boks will have a coach by the end of the week.

The Star

Original source: Bok coach Coetzee by Friday?

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