World Rugby appoints Schmidt to new high-performance role

Dublin (AFP) –

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Former Ireland coach Joe Schmidt has been appointed as World Rugby's director of rugby and high performance, the sport's global governing body announced on Thursday.

Schmidt's responsibilities in the newly created job, based at the organisation's Dublin headquarters, will include player welfare as well as training and education.

The New Zealander, who will join World Rugby in November, led Ireland to three Six Nations titles during his time in charge from 2013 to 2019, including the Grand Slam in 2018.

Before taking up the Ireland job Schmidt, named World Rugby coach of the year in 2018, won the European Champions Cup twice with Irish provincial side Leinster.

"I'm really looking forward to getting started," he said. "I'm passionate about the game and keen that people continue to enjoy being involved in it, from the young to the young at heart.

"The professional game is the showpiece for our sport and involving key stakeholders in our discussions about how the game is played and how players are managed will be beneficial.

"It has been a challenging year thus far and likely to remain difficult for some time, but it has been great to see the resumption of numerous competitions."