Blues

Nucifora looking to wear two hats

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Australian David Nucifora could be occupying two coaching positions next year, after he confirmed he would be staying on as Blues coach for the Super 14 even if he was selected as the Wallabies coach.

Nucifora, who has his name in the hat to replace John Connolly as Australia’s national team mentor, confirmed on Wednesday that he was committed to the New Zealand franchise until the end of the Super 14.

This means he will be in charge of the Auckland-based side for a third successive season.

The 45-year-old Nucifora said that both the Blues and the New Zealand Rugby Union (NZRU) were well aware of, and had no issues regarding his interest in the Wallabies coaching job.

He also stated that Australian Rugby Union (ARU) boss John O’Neill had said that should the successful candidate be a Super 14 coach, he was happy for him to complete his duties until the end of the competition.

“That’s my commitment as well, if that did happen,” Nucifora told NZPA.

“There’s a lot of what ifs, but the focus is certainly with the Blues.”

On the list of applicants for the job of coaching the Wallabies are current assistant coaches John Muggleton and Scott Johnson, as well as two other Super 14 coaches in Ewen McKenzie (Waratahs) and Laurie Fisher (Brumbies).

Jake White, South Africa’s World Cup winner, is also reported to be in the picture.

However, it appears that Crusaders coach Robbie Deans has distanced himself from contention after he stated that his priority was to coach the All Blacks if that position became available.

Formal interviews will be held by the ARU on 9 November, with the board expected to meet a week later to discuss the applications and make a decision.

 

365 Digital

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