Steve Hansen appointed new All Blacks coach
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The New Zealand Rugby Union appointed Steve Hansen (pictured) as the new head coach of the world champion All Blacks on Friday, replacing Graham Henry who stepped down after winning the World Cup.
Reuters - Former All Blacks assistant coach Steve Hansen got the promotion he wanted on Friday when he was named head coach of the rugby World Cup champions.
The 52-year-old had been widely expected to be appointed to the role after Graham Henry retired last month and fellow assistant Wayne Smith had taken a coaching consultant role with the Super Rugby side Waikato Chiefs.
Hansen, who has been awarded a two-year contract, said he was proud to have been given the job. "In this sport it's the greatest honour you can receive," Hansen told reporters at New Zealand Rugby Union (NZRU)
"It comes with a huge amount of responsibility and all I can say is that I'm passionate about rugby, passionate about New Zealand, passionate about the All Blacks jersey and its' legacy, and I look forward to the next two years with this team and
taking it forward and enhancing that legacy."
The former Canterbury midfield back, who has carved out a niche as forwards coach, was the only candidate put forward for formal interview at the NZRU board meeting on Friday.
The NZRU said they were in negotiations with people who Hansen had identified as preferred members of his coaching staff but would not reveal their names.
Hansen said there would be only one assistant coach and various specialist coaches.
Former Chiefs coach Ian Foster and Aussie McLean, who was an assistant for Samoa at the 2011 World Cup, had been reported by local media as being in the running to act as his assistants.