World Cup Coaches

It is interesting to note that only seven of the twenty countries participating in the World Cup are actually coached by natives of that country.

They are the Sanzaar teams of the Argentine, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa, together with France and Scotland, together with Tonga.

The seventh, Tonga, is coached by the Tongan born Australian rugby player, Toutai Kefu, who played all his rugby in Australia and earned 60 caps for the Wallabies and 103 for the Queensland Reds.

Every single one of the other participants is coached by a foreigner.

New Zealand provides 6 of the coaches at this year’s RWC, while Wales provide 4, then Australia, and Argentina, and South Africa with 2 each. France, Ireland, Scotland, and Tonga provide for 1 coach each.

Interesting too, that Wales, who provide for four of the coaches at the RWC, are themselves coached by a New Zealander, as are Ireland, who provide the Italian coach.

England, the country that likes to call itself the “Home of Rugby” does not have a single coach participating at the Rugby World Cup, while they themselves are coached by an Australian assisted by a New Zealander or two, some more Aussies, a South African, and a Frenchman. The bulk of Eddie Jones’ 27 back-room staff members are, however, English.

Here are the World Cup coaches, together with their place of birth:

Argentina, coached by Mario Ledesma,born 17 May 1973 in Buenos Aires

Australia, coached by Michael Cheika, born 4 March 1967, Sydney Australia

Canada, coached by Kingsley Jones, born 19 June 1969, in Nantyglo, Wales

England, coached by Eddie Jones, born 30 January 1960, Tasmania, Australia

Fiji, coached byJohn McKee, born in New Zealand, resides in Australia.

France, coached byJacques Brunel, born 14 January 1954, Courrensan, France

Georgia, coached by Milton Haig,  6 February 1964, Invercargill, New Zealand

Ireland, coached by Joe Schmidt, 12 September 1965, Kawakawa, New Zealand

Italy, coached by Conor O’Shea, born 21 October 1970, County Limerick, Ireland

Japan, coached by Jamie Joseph, born 21 November 1969, Blenheim, New Zealand

Namibia, coached by Phil Davies, born 19 October 1963 in Seven Sisters, Wales

New Zealand, coached by Steve Hansen, born 7 May 1959, Mosgiel, Otago, New Zealand.

Russia, coached by Lyn Jones, born 5 June 1964, Cwmafan, Wales

Samoa, coached bySteve Jackson, born in New Zealand

Scotland, coached by Gregor Townsend, born 26 April 1973 in Galashiels, Scottish Borders.

South Africa, coached by Rassie Erasmus, born 5 November 1972, Despatch, South Africa.

Tonga, coached byToutai Kefu, born 8 April 1974 (age 45 years), Tonga

Wales, coached by Warren Gatland, born 17 September 1963, Hamilton, New Zealand.

Uruguay, coached by Esteban Meneses, born 13 September 1972, La Plata, Argentina.

USA, coached by Gary Gold, born 6 July 1967, Cape Town, South Africa.