David Skipwith is the Herald's rugby league reporter

League: Justin Morgan and Willie Poching appointed Kiwis assistant coaches

Former Warriors assistant coach Justin Morgan has been appointed assistant to Kiwis head coach David Kidwell. Photo / Photosport.
Former Warriors assistant coach Justin Morgan has been appointed assistant to Kiwis head coach David Kidwell. Photo / Photosport.

Kiwis head coach David Kidwell has named Justin Morgan and former New Zealand international Willie Poching as his assistant coaches for the upcoming transtasman test against Australia in Perth and the Four Nations tour to the UK.

The pair have been contracted through to the end of the Four Nations campaign after which the New Zealand Rugby League will undergo a post-season review before confirming appointments to go through to next year's World Cup.

Morgan's appointment comes after his role this season as assistant to former Warriors head coach Andrew McFadden. Prior to that, the 41-year-old held assistant roles at the Melbourne Storm 2014-2015 and the Canberra Raiders 2012-2013.

"Justin brings great experience holding a head coaching position in Super League and being involved with the Storm and Warriors," said Kidwell.

The 133 NRL game veteran retired from playing at 26 to take up coaching. Starting his career in France, he was the head coach of Hull Kingston Rovers from 2007-2011.

Former New Zealand international back-rower and Samoan captain, Poching has spent the last 17 years involved in top level rugby league in the UK, the last six as an assistant coach with the Warrington Wolves, Leeds Rhinos and Hull Kingston Rovers.

Former New Zealand and Samoa international Willie Poching will focus on the forwards while Justin Morgan will work with the backs in their roles as assistants to Kiwis head coach David Kidwell. Photo / Photosport.
Former New Zealand and Samoa international Willie Poching will focus on the forwards while Justin Morgan will work with the backs in their roles as assistants to Kiwis head coach David Kidwell. Photo / Photosport.

"Willie has so much experience as an assistant coach in the Super League and as a former Kiwi and captain of Samoa he knows what international footy is all about," said Kidwell.

"Both of these guys are great people who will compliment my coaching style."

Morgan, whose chief responsibility at the Warriors was improving the side's defensive structures, will concentrate on working with the backs while Poching will focus on the forwards.

"We are very pleased that David has been able to secure the services of two experienced coaches for our upcoming campaign" says NZRL CEO Alex Hayton.

"During the off season we will, as usual, review the year with the coaching staff and management team and once complete, confirm all our appointments to take us through to the World Cup."

The full 24-man Kiwis squad will be named after Sunday's NRL grand final between Melbourne Storm and the Cronulla Sharks.

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter

SIGN UP NOW

© Copyright 2016, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production apcf03 at 11 Dec 2016 00:47:42 Processing Time: 548ms