In-demand Robertson recommits to Crusaders, New Zealand

Wellington (AFP) –


Canterbury Crusaders coach Scott "Razor" Robertson confirmed Friday he is staying with the top Super Rugby side until 2024, having made it clear he wants the most sought after job of handling the All Blacks.

The in-demand Robertson, who has been linked to several glamour coaching positions around the world since he missed out on the All Blacks role to Ian Foster in 2019, has signed a new three-year contract with the Crusaders, saying: "the best is yet to come".

"I love this team, and I'm proud of what we've been able to achieve on and off the field over the past five seasons, for the people of the Crusaders region," Robertson said.

Foster was only given a two-year contract but if the All Blacks perform to expectations this year it is anticipated to be extended through to the 2023 World Cup in France.

It is understood Robertson wanted clarity around New Zealand Rugby's processes when selecting an All Blacks coach before signing the new agreement to stay with the Crusaders.

Robertson said earlier this year he had been patient in his dealings with New Zealand Rugby but added: "I'm also an ambitious career coach. So, for me to have the opportunity, if it's here or elsewhere, you always keep looking at those opportunities."

The 46-year-old, who played 23 Tests for the All Blacks between 1998-2002, is nicknamed "Razor" and renowned for his on-field breakdancing routine when his team win titles.

He won four Super Rugby championships as a Crusaders player and five since taking over as coach in 2017.

Robertson has guided the team to a remarkable record of 71 wins with only four draws and nine losses.

"I value the relationship I have with our playing group, they challenge me every day. The best is yet to come from this team, so I'm excited to confirm my coaching future in New Zealand," he said.

New Zealand Rugby chief executive Mark Robinson described Robertson's coaching record as "exceptional", with Crusaders boss Colin Mansbridge adding that he has a "special skill around storytelling and bringing a vision and values to life."

Before taking over as the Crusaders coach, Robertson was involved in eight titles wins as both assistant coach then head coach of the Canterbury team in New Zealand's domestic competition.

He also coached the New Zealand team which won the Under 20 World Championship in 2015.