Physicality high on Plumtree agenda
REACTION: New head coach Ian Foster is working hard on the final piece of the All Black puzzle, but it is what he already has that excites him.
Foster was not willing to go into details, but confirmed that negotiations are underway to lure Brad Mooar back from Europe.
The tidy sum of NZ$400,00 is, according to New Zealand media reports, the asking price of Welsh franchise Scarlets for the release of Mooar.
“We haven’t got a plan B,” Foster told a media briefing, after naming the bulk of his assistants, adding: “I don’t think I need any alternatives.
“I’m really confident.
“We’re having good ongoing conversations. The relationship has been strong and hopefully, it’s going to happen pretty soon.”
Like Foster, all of the assistants are on two-year contracts – which stop short of the 2023 World Cup in France.
“They’re all outstanding coaches in their own right,” Foster said.
“We’ll have new voices and fresh ideas in the All Blacks, which will be really stimulating for everyone, and help us grow as we enter a new era.”
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It is the role of Plumtree, in particular, that has caused a stir.
“When I looked at the role, I really felt that this team needs another head coach,” Foster said, when asked about Plumtree.
“John’s done a really good job in that space as a head coach and he understands the bigger picture and the strategy of managing a top team and has proven experience.”
Plumtree will be tasked with increasing the physicality of the forward pack.
“I have really liked his mannerisms and the way he deals with the players,” Foster said.
“He cares for them and he also pushes them.
“We need to grow our edge in that physical forward stuff and I think he will do that really well.”
The All Blacks had issues dealing with the physicality of the South African and English forwards at the World Cup in Japan.
Sources: TVNZ, NZME, Reuters & AFP
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