Scott Robertson: If ABs don't want me, I'm going overseas

Scott Robertson celebrates winning the 2022 Super Rugby Pacific title. Photo: Getty Images
Scott Robertson celebrates winning the 2022 Super Rugby Pacific title. Photo: Getty Images
Scott Robertson has dropped a bombshell on New Zealand rugby saying he is open to offers from rival test nations.

England already looms as one possibility as Robertson sets his sights on replicating his success in charge of the Crusaders on rugby's biggest stages.

The Crusaders coach, the people's favourite who has been snubbed for the All Black job, is desperate to coach at multiple World Cups.

And with New Zealand Rugby hanging on to under-fire coach Ian Foster, Robertson appears to have had enough.

He has told podcast host Jim Hamilton, the former Scottish forward, that his knock back by New Zealand Rugby after the 2019 World Cup had taught him to "keep your options open".

"If New Zealand Rugby want me, great," Robertson told The Big Jim Show.

"If there is another country - I wouldn't go to a club now - I really want to go to Rugby World Cup. I genuinely want to go to a couple.

"It's one job (All Blacks coach) and when someone doesn't give it to you, you have to think differently, about what opportunities are out there.

"I'm 47, I'll be 52 by the time of the next Rugby World Cup ... I want to go to two or three and test myself, push myself. I am open [to offers], yeah."

Robertson, the former All Blacks loosie, has won six titles in charge of the Crusaders since he took over in 2017.

He is contracted with the Crusaders for 2023 but is clearly thinking beyond Super Rugby.

"It would be great to win a World Cup with your own country, which I want to do. That is the foremost thing," he said.

"But I would love to do it with another country. I'm not sure what order it is.

"I'm not sure how that plays out, those decisions are not mine.

"I would love to win two and have a different expectation, different culture.

"You have got to adapt to the country that you are coaching and get the best out of them. It's when someone goes 'how did he do that'? That is pretty special."

Robertson has already seen his assistant and "mate" Jason Ryan – who he describes as an incredible forwards coach – elevated to try and help dig the All Blacks out of a hole.

Speculation around Robertson's intentions increased when he met with England coach Eddie Jones in Sydney during the recent test series against the Wallabies.

Jones finishes up with England after next year' World Cup, and they have yet to nominate a candidate to replace him.

Robertson said: "We (Robertson and Jones) have a good relationship. My best mate lives over there and I went to the test with him and it was a great experience.

"I took the wife over, and it was good to get away to Sydney for the weekend.

"You have to keep your options open … I'll be coming into my seventh year as the Crusaders coach next year. I have loved it, it has been incredible, but no one lasts in a job forever so I am open."

Meanwhile Robertson has praised the work of former England international Mike Catt as an Ireland assistant.

"It's pretty special, their short passing game, the work off the ball that they do."

Along with Ryan and Catt, Robertson also praised Steve Borthwick (Leicester) and Robin McBryde (Leinster).

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