Hansen heading to Toyota Verblitz: report

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen talks to media at Poneke Rugby Club. Photo: Getty Images
Steve Hansen. Photo: Getty Images
Steve Hansen's next job appears to be an open secret.

The All Blacks coach, who will step down from the post after this year's World Cup, has again been linked with a director of rugby role at Japan's Toyota Verblitz.

The Sydney Morning Herald has doubled-down on the speculation, saying Waratahs forwards coach Simon Cron will join him at the club.

It's the second time this month he's been linked with the post by separate outlets.

All Blacks captain Kieran Read is already signed with Toyota Verblitz from next season.

The side's currently being guided by Jake White who mentored South Africa to the 2007 World Cup.

Cron, who is off-contract at the end of this season at NSW, is a man in demand.

One of the most highly-rated coaches in Australia among players, Cron has transformed the Waratahs' once shoddy set-piece into one of Super Rugby's best.

The Waratahs have already announced that Daryl Gibson will continue as head coach next year.

Earlier this month the Daily Telegraph reported Cron has not yet made a decision on his future, although the lure of working with Hansen, and lack of head coaching options in Australia would form part of his thinking.

Toyota recently announced the signing of All Blacks captain Read, and luring Hansen would be a double jackpot for the franchise, which has never won the Top League.

Hansen, who coached the All Blacks to victory in the 2015 World Cup and was assistant when they won it in 2011, has announced he will step down from the job after this year's World Cup but has yet to announce what he's doing beyond that.

Cron is the nephew of All Blacks scrum coach Mike Cron and is well connected in New Zealand.

He was signed by the Waratahs last season after leading Northern Suburbs to their first Shute Shield premiership in 41 years in 2016, then narrowly losing the 2017 final to Warringah.

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