Maori All Blacks Announce All Blacks Legend For Munster Game
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Former All Blacks captain and current Blues coach Tana Umaga has been announced as an Assistant Coach of the Maori All Blacks for their November tour that includes a clash against Munster in Thomond Park on Friday, November 11.
Head Coach Colin Cooper, who is also in charge of Taranaki, will be joined by Umaga and Waikato Forwards Coach Carl Hoeft, who has been appointed Assistant Forwards Coach.
“I’m delighted to have Tana and Carl join us,” said Head Coach Cooper.
“Their mix of specific coaching skills and insight as former players adds huge value to the work we are doing around this team.
“Tana brings a certain mana to our team – he understands the professional rugby environment well and brings a strong high performance approach to his work. There’s no doubting the knowledge that Carl brings to the forward pack so it’s great to have him on board as well.”
“The Maori All Blacks is a special team and it’s important that we can access great high performance coaching skills.”
The Maori All Blacks squad will be named next month and Umaga, who is off Samoan heritage- is looking forward to getting started.
“With my own Samoan background, the cultures are very similar and I know, having been around a lot of the Maori culture in my upbringing, how important it is and the respect it deserves. I’m really excited about the opportunity,” Umaga said.
“I like that expansive game. Obviously my brief there is around the back play and attack so I want to make sure that we’re keeping true to the values of Maori rugby. But also trying to add to it, to upskill the players as much as we can in the short, limited time that we have.”.
The Maori All Blacks face Munster in Thomond Park on Friday, November 11. [Munster Rugby]