All Black coaching ticket commits through to next World Cup

The news comes after Wayne Smith announced he will step down

BY Simon Maguire 11:10 Tuesday 23 May 2017, 11:10 23 May 2017

New Zealand All Blacks Ian Foster and Steve Hansen. Image: ©INPHO/Billy Stickland

The New Zealand management have received a boost with the news that two of their assistant coaches have signed-up to stay with the team until the next World Cup.

Assistant Head Coach Ian Foster and Forwards Coach Mike Cron have committed to the All Blacks through to the 2019 World Cup in Japan.

The news comes just days after Wayne Smith announced he was taking a sabbatical from rugby having been involved with coaching the national side since 1998 in various spells.

All Blacks' Kieran Read and Richie McCaw lift the Webb Ellis cup. Image: ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Both Foster and Cron joined Steve Hansen's management ticket in 2012 and have since masterminded a successful defence of the Rugby World Cup which they won in 2011.

"Having 'Fosie' re-sign is great news," said Hansen. "He's been an integral member of the All Blacks coaching and management group over the last five years and he brings a lot of composure, rugby nous and intellect to the team."

Commenting on Cron's signature he said: "He's been around teams I've coached for a long, long time now and is someone I trust very much.

"He's never stopped growing as a coach, he's never stopped learning and he constantly stimulates the players with what he brings to the table. It's also fantastic to have him re-sign through to the next World Cup."

New Zealand are currently preparing for the Lions series in June and are due to play a warm-up match with Samoa in a couple of weeks time.

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