Four members of Springboks coaching staff sign new deals, Nienaber set to leave

SA Rugby has announced that four members of the current Springboks coaching staff, namely Mzwandile Stick, Deon Davids, Daan Human, and Andy Edwards, have agreed to extend their contracts for another four years, until the end of the 2027 Rugby World Cup in Australia.

These individuals will continue to work alongside SA Rugby Director of Rugby Rassie Erasmus, who is committed to his role until at least the end of the 2025 season.

Springboks head coach set to leave

Unfortunately, two members of the current coaching team, Jacques Nienaber and Felix Jones, have informed SA Rugby that they will be moving on to take up opportunities with England and Leinster, respectively, after the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

SA Rugby CEO Rian Oberholzer expressed his pleasure at the news of the extensions, stating that the team is thrilled to have these individuals on board for another four years.

“They all come a long way as a coaching team under the guidance of Rassie, as Director of Rugby, and I am confident that the continuity in our coaching staff will bode well for the Springboks for 2023 and the following seasons.

“It was our ambition to retain all the current coaching staff in recognition of the excellent work they have done over the past six years regardless of the outcomes of the Rugby World Cup later this year, and we are pleased that most of them have agreed to continue with the team.

“The planning to confirm a successor in the title role of Springbok coach remains ongoing in the background, while Rassie’s services are tied down to the end of 2025 at the very least.

“With their services secured, it is business as usual, and we would like to wish all the national coaches the best of luck as their preparations pick up for the forthcoming international season and the Rugby World Cup in France.”

Springboks schedule

The Springboks will face Australia in Pretoria on Saturday, 8 July, in their first Test of the season in the abbreviated Castle Lager Rugby Championship, which will be followed by matches against New Zealand at the Mount Smart Stadium in Auckland a week later, and Argentina in Johannesburg on Saturday, 29 July.

The team will then make the journey to Buenos Aires in August to take on the Pumas before facing Wales and the All Blacks in Rugby World Cup warm-up matches in Cardiff and London in the final build-up to the Rugby World Cup.

South Africa will launch their Rugby World Cup title defence on Sunday, 10 September, against Scotland in Marseille, which will be followed by pool matches against Romania in Bordeaux (17 September), Ireland in Paris (23 September) and Tonga in Marseille (1 October).

The Rugby World Cup quarter-finals will be played on the weekend of 14/15 October, with the semi-finals on 20/21 October and the final on Saturday, 28 October.

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