Wynne Gray

Wynne Gray is a Herald columnist

Rugby: Ireland give Blues coach pairing a try

David Nucifora. Photo / Brett Phibbs
David Nucifora. Photo / Brett Phibbs

Former Blues coaches Joe Schmidt and David Nucifora are about to pool their rugby knowledge once more but this time their roles will be reversed.

Schmidt is Ireland's coach while Nucifora is poised to take up a deal as the union's high performance rugby director.

The pair worked together for three years in the Super rugby series before Schmidt took up a contract with the Clermont club in Europe then Leinster before he was appointed to coach Ireland.

Nucifora coached the Blues for three seasons with Schmidt as his assistant in 2006-7.

When their time with the Blues expired, Schmidt went to Europe and Nucifora returned to Australia as general manager of their high performance group.

Now the Irish media report that Nucifora has been recruited as the final member of the coaching staff to take the group through to next year's World Cup in England. He will work with Schmidt, and his assistants Les Kiss and John Plumtree.

Nucifora's mission is to revamp Irish professional rugby and increase the talent pool. He is expected to be with Ireland for their tests against Argentina in June.

- NZ Herald

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