Donnelly lands role

Tom Donnelly. Photo: Getty Images
Tom Donnelly. Photo: Getty Images
Otago coach Tom Donnelly has been recognised at a national level.

The former All Black lock has been named as the assistant coach of the New Zealand under-20 side.

He will join fellow former All Blacks in Tabai Matson and Cory Jane as the coaches of the under-20 side.

Matson will be the head coach while Donnelly and Jane will be his assistants.

Though games have yet to be arranged for the colts side, it is hoped matches will be played against teams from across the Tasman later in the year.

The colts side used to play in the World Junior Championships but Covid-19 has put an end to that for the foreseeable future.

New Zealand Rugby also revealed the new Super Rugby Aotearoa under-20 tournament draw.

It will involve the five Super Rugby sides and a Barbarians team. Games will be played at Owen Delany Park in Taupo on April 11, April 14, and April 17.

The Barbarians team will be coached by former North Harbour fullback Paul Feeney and involve players from across all unions who are not in their Super Rugby under-20 side.

The Highlanders under-20 side is set to be named in just over a week. It will be coached by Hawke’s Bay coach Mark Uzich.

The Highlanders under-20 side will play the Barbarians side on April 11, the Hurricanes on April 14 and the Crusaders on April 17.

The Jock Hobbs Memorial National under-19 tournament will not take place this year, with provincial unions instead delivering regional under-19 programmes.

It was canned last year to save money when Covid-19 hit.

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