Ian Foster, the former All Blacks coach, makes fun of NZR and the media
Ian Foster, the departing coach of the All Blacks, took a jab at New Zealand Rugby (NZR) a few days after he officially left the position.
Foster, who had advised NZR to postpone choosing a coach until after the World Cup, was formally replaced on Wednesday, the day the defeated All Blacks returned to New Zealand from France, by former Crusaders coach Scott Robertson.
Foster said to Newstalk ZB on Friday morning, “I wouldn’t say there was a lack of trust, I just think when you think you’ve got a plan B in your pocket, sometimes you don’t back plan A probably as much as you could.”
Given that Robertson finished with a 69% win rate over the previous four years, Foster was asked if he would have applied again in the hopes of keeping the position if Robertson hadn’t materialized. Foster chose not to reapply for the position in March after NZR made the decision to move quickly in their search.
After first declining to discuss it, he stated that “utter confidence from your board, CEOs, all that sort of stuff” is what an All Blacks coach most needs.
Foster stated to Newstalk ZB, “That would have been the first thing I sought to clarify before I put my name in the hat again.”
Foster continued his remarks about plan B, or Robertson, the All Blacks coach appointed on March 21 and set to serve until 2027.
When he spoke to the media in France this week, Foster stated that he intended to carry on coaching while he was back home with his family and hinted at the possibility of taking over a different nation.
He insists he hasn’t spoken to anyone yet, but he acknowledged on Friday that he had turned down offers of conversation after learning about them prior to the World Cup.
Before the World Cup, I essentially offered two options: “If you want to talk to me, you can
Because I don’t want this team or this nation to believe that I was preoccupied with trying to get my life together before the most important occasion.
Foster continued by saying that the timing wasn’t ideal because most previously unfilled positions were now filled; for this reason, Robertson advocated for NZR to start early in the new year.
Foster said he would think about coaching club rugby in Europe or Japan in addition to the international game, but that would require more thought after leading the All Blacks to victory in 32 of their 46 tests.
He told Newstalk ZB, “But it’s really hard to talk about trying to coach another country when you’ve only had 12 years with the best team in the world. It’s such a personal team, and, quite honestly, I just need to breathe a little bit before I go down that path.”
After bringing a number of younger players into the team over the previous 12 months, Foster said he was “at peace” and felt he had left the All Blacks in a strong position. Foster had led his team to within a whisker of Cup glory.
Foster took a shot at the media when asked to describe his relationship with the general public because he knew that many people wanted Robertson to lead.
“We had another candidate that half the people wanted, and from there, that was the lens they looked at everything we did,” Foster said on Newstalk ZB in reference to the two-year contract.
It’s extremely difficult to change someone’s mind once they’ve made up their mind. To be honest, I don’t mind at all. All right, so that doesn’t change the fact that we have work to do, and hopefully by now they’ve realized that I oversaw a highly motivated group that had the potential to actually field a World Cup-winning squad.
“The help I’ve received is outstanding. I believe it’s important to distinguish between specific media factions and the rugby community as two distinct audiences.