VIDEO: Bulls 'the right team at the right time'
IN CONVERSATION WITH JAKE WHITE: It has been a decade since the Bulls last won any first-class silverware and they have become the butt of many jokes.
World Cup-winning former Springbok coach Jake White believes he may just be the man to end a drought for a team that has three Super Rugby titles (the last in 2010) and 23 Currie Cup championships (the last in 2009).
White, speaking to historian and author Dean Allen – as part of a hugely popular weekly fund-raising effort for the Chris Burger and Petro Jackson Players Fund – said he has always joined teams who he thought he could add value to.
“It is not taking a job for the sake of taking a job,” White told Allen.
He pointed to his stints at the Brumbies (Australia), Montpellier (France) and Verblitz (Japan) as examples where he achieved progress and success.
“I always believed I must join a team where I can improve them and add value,” he said about the decision to move to Pretoria.
“The Bulls have unbelievable history and an unbelievable tradition,” White said, adding: “They have been Super Rugby champions [three times], Currie Cup champions [23 times] and they produced lots of Springboks.”
However, it is also his close ties with the new owners of the franchise that convinced him to take up the position as Director of Rugby at Loftus Versfeld.
“I also have a vested interest that I have a very good friend in Johann Rupert that has bought [a share] in the company – with him and Patrice Motsepe as partners,” he said of the 37 percent shares Remgro (Rupert) and African Rainbow Capital (Motsepe) obtained late last year.
“I felt it is a great time to join a franchise like the Bulls.
“They have been underachievers for a long time now and there is this burning desire for them to become champions again.
“It is a great franchise to join at the right time.
“It is always about joining the right team at the right time.”
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White also confirmed he will follow the same management style that helped him win two major international trophies – IRB Under-21 title in 2002 and the senior World Cup in 2007.
“The thing I have learnt, as I became older, is I have a feeling for what is needed in terms of the support structure around you,” White told Allen.
“People often talk about selecting your team.
“People don’t appreciate the importance of surrounding yourself with the right team of support staff.
“It is not just the players you select, it is about who you surround yourself with.
“If they are not all on the same page, and they don’t all have the understanding of what you want as a coach, your management can become a disconnected structure.
“There is no doubt, if your players pick up that your management is disconnected, it leads to unsuccessful teams on the field.
“I have been very fortunate that the management teams I have put together have been very fortunate.
“I have also learnt, along the way, what kind of personalities you need in your management team.”
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