Joseph looking forward to challenge of coaching Sunwolves

Jamie Joseph
Jamie Joseph
Former Highlanders coach Jamie Joseph is coming back to Super Rugby but he will not face his old side next season.

Joseph was named yesterday as the new coach of the Sunwolves, the Japanese Super Rugby team which has been in the competition for two years. Joseph will replace Filo Tiatia as head coach.

The Sunwolves and the Japan Rugby Football Union have been in talks over the future direction of the franchise over the past two weeks which has led to the formation of the Japan Super Rugby Association.

As a part of these talks, Joseph has been appointed the new coach of the Sunwolves.

It is not known whether his new assistant coach of the Japanese national side, Tony Brown, is going to join him at the Sunwolves.

Ben Herring, who coached at the Highlanders and Otago last year, was an assistant coach at the Sunwolves this year, and is the defence coach for the Japanese national side, alongside Joseph. He is likely to continue with the Sunwolves.

The Sunwolves have struggled in their two years in the competition, finishing second-last in both years.

Tiatia would not be part of the new organisation which also has former Steel trainer Simon Jones as its head conditioner and trainer.Joseph said Tiatia had been an integral part in the development of Japanese players in preparation of the World Cup.

But Joseph, who coached the Highlanders for six years, was looking forward to the new season.

"I can’t wait for the new season. We have a huge challenge ahead of us but I’ve been here before with the Highlanders," he said.

Due to the structure of the draw the Highlanders will not play the Sunwolves in next year’s competition.

• Brad Thorn is expected to take over as Reds coach after the Super Rugby side reportedly sacked Nick Stiles, AAP reports.

Stiles’ future had been uncertain after coaching the Brisbane-based side to just four wins in 2017.

Former All Black and rugby league star Thorn will take over before next season, according to several reports, and is set to be the Reds’ second straight rookie coach.

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