Jamie Joseph stands down as Sunwolves coach.

Not unexpectedly, Jamie Joseph has announced that he will stand down as head coach of the Sunwolves in next year’s Super Rugby series. He will focus on his job as head coach of the Japanese national team ahead of the World Cup next year.

The announcement came on Thursday as Japan marked a year to go before the Japanese Brave Blossoms tackle Russia in the 2019 Rugby World Cup opening game.

Although he won’t be coaching the Sunwolves next year, Joseph will be directly involved in appointing his successor

“I won’t be coaching the Sunwolves next year, but I will be involved in appointing the coaches,” Joseph told Kyodo Times.

“Next year we need to be peaking in September, certainly not February when the Super Rugby competition starts.

“You can expect a number of our players will not be participating at the start of the Super Rugby competition with the Sunwolves, but they will start a bit later in the season.”

Tony Brown is said to be the favourite to take over from Joseph. It will be the fourth coaching appointment at the Sunwolves in four seasons since starting their involvement in Super Rugby.