Umaga joins Maori All Blacks
NEWS: Former All Blacks captain and current Blues coach Tana Umaga has been appointed the assistant coach for the Maori All Blacks.
The 43-year-old Umaga will join coach Colin Cooper for the November tour, which includes an international against the United States in Chicago, Irish side Munster and English side Harlequins.
Umaga captained the All Blacks 21 times from 2004 until 2005 and earned 74 caps before moving to France where he played for, and then coached Toulon.
Joining Umaga in the coaching ranks is former All Blacks prop and Waikato forwards coach Carl Hoeft, who has been appointed as the forwards coach.
"I'm delighted to have Tana [Umaga] and Carl [Hoeft] join us. 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 as 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," Cooper said.
The Maori All Blacks touring squad will be named in September.
Maori All Blacks management:
Head Coach - Colin Cooper
Assistant Coach - Tana Umaga
Assistant Forwards Coach - Carl Hoeft
Kaumatua - Luke Crawford
Manager - Tony Ward
Video Analyst - Jayson Ross
Doctor - Zig Khouri
Strength and Conditioning Coach - Bradley Anderson
Physiotherapist - Ash Draper
Logistics /Massage - Paul Minehan
Maori All Blacks 2016 schedule (kick-off times TBC):
Friday, November 4: v USA Eagles, Chicago
Friday, November 11: v Munster, Thomond Park
Wednesday, November16: v Harlequins, Twickenham Stoop