South Africa Springboks Rugby News

Jake White to choose ‘new’ support structure




Springbok coach will have the right to choose his own “support structures”, but that does not ruled out the possibility of a change in the coaching set-up of South Africa’s national team.

White survived a motion of no confidence, brought against him by the Blue Bulls Rugby Union at a meeting of the President’s Council of the South African Rugby Union (SARU) in Cape Town on Wednesday, and will continue to coach the Boks for now.

But he has to report back to the President’s Council in February, when they want a detailed plan of how he plans to take the Boks to the World Cup in France next year.

“The Springbok coach was afforded the opportunity to respond to important questions posed by the presidents,” SARU said in a statement on Wednesday.

“The outcome of the robust discussion is that the Springbok coach must submit a report at the next Presidents Council meeting, to be held next February, outlining his team strategy and support structure for 2007.”

It was also revealed that the President’s Council voted nine to five against the motion of no confidence.

It was earlier reported that White’s back-up staff – assistant coaches Gert Smal and Allister Coetzee – are likely to roll in a shake-up of the Bok management before next year’s World Cup.

While the statement, after the meeting of the President’s Council in Cape Town on Wednesday, did not specify how White should handle the issue of his back-up staff, it appears the process that will see White’s back-up team get the boot was set in motion.

Blue Bulls coach Heyneke Meyer and Cheetahs mentor Rassie Erasmus have been identified as possible assistant coaches.

South Africa’s backline has struggled for penetration this year, while the forwards were outplayed by France, New Zealand and Ireland. However, SA Rugby will chiefly be hoping that any new appointments are more aggressive in challenging White.

Nick Mallett and Andre Markgraaff have also been identified as candidates for a technical committee.

“I’m relieved that I can get on with life and not feel like someone is trying to take my job every weekend,” White told Reuters.

“It was a very positive meeting and they asked me what I needed to ensure that Springboks would have the best chance to win the World Cup.

“I told them we need as much support and positive energy from them. They assured me they would do everything than can to support the team and me.

“They have given me their full backing until the end of the World Cup,” added White, who is contracted to coach the Springboks until the conclusion of the 2007 tournament in France.

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