Former All Blacks loose forward Jono Gibbes is among th candidates tipped to take over as set piece coach for the Wallabies.

Gibbes, 41, was one of three candidates in the hunt to replace Mario Ledesma who left the Wallabies to take up a role with the Jaguares in Super Rugby.

While Gibbes' name had come up in connection with the role, the Sydney Morning Herald reported head coach Michael Cheika remained tight-lipped about who the candidates were.

"I'm really pleased with them, I was a bit worried at first about how I would find someone to replace Mario, who's such a good operator, but I've got three guys I'm really interested in and it's proving more difficult than I thought on that front," Cheika said. "I'm hoping by the end of February I'll have that done. I've got three guys I've narrowed it down to right now."

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Jono Gibbes currently coaches at Ulster. Photo / Getty Images.
Jono Gibbes currently coaches at Ulster. Photo / Getty Images.

Brumbies breakdown guru Laurie Fisher was linked with the role last year, while former Reds coach Nick Stiles is a highly regarded forwards coach and Gibbes had also been mentioned in connection with the role.

Chiefs legend Gibbes was in his first of a two-season deal with Irish province Ulster, making a sudden move south somewhat complicated.

The 41-year-old played for the Chiefs between 2001 and 2007, and played eight matches for the All Blacks between 2004 and 2005.

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