Patrick McKendry is a rugby writer for the Herald.

Rugby: Steve Hansen set to re-sign with All Blacks

Steve Hansen. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Steve Hansen. Photo / Brett Phibbs

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen appears on the brink of announcing he is recommitting to New Zealand Rugby.

A New Zealand Rugby media advisory today flagged an important announcement for tomorrow morning in Wellington which is likely to feature Hansen confirming he will stay on until after the 2019 World Cup in Japan.

His current contract ends after next year's Lions tour, but after being involved in the All Blacks' past two World Cup triumphs, New Zealand Rugby will be eager to secure his services until after the next one.

In the aftermath of his team's final victory over Australia in November, Hansen expressed doubts about whether he would recommit due to the time away from his family and the fact the All Blacks might need a new voice. But those doubts have since eased and the negotiations have started.

He told the BBC recently that he expected an announcement to be made before the Rugby Championship starts in August, so it appears he and New Zealand Rugby have agreed terms.

"There's four things I've looked at," the BBC reported Hansen as saying. "One is the family, is it right for them? Is it right for the team? Is it right for the rugby union, and can I still get up in the morning and motivate myself and the team to improve?

"So if I can't do all those things, I won't do it. If I still think I can do it and the players are keen on me to do it, then I'll think about it. There's one or two I've just got to ask myself yet and we'll make a decision before the Rugby Championship."

The All Blacks begin the championship with a test against Australia in Sydney on August 20, a clash which will pit Hansen against Wallabies coach Michael Cheika, who in June presided over three home defeats against England.

- NZ Herald

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