007. 19 Things About 2019 #7

#7 Let Shag Be Shag


The skinny

Steve ‘Shag’ Hansen announced in December that he will be stepping down as All Blacks coach at the conclusion of Rugby World Cup 2019.


Why this matters

So a few journalists or columnists or ‘look at me’s interviewed their typewriters after Shag’s announcement and decided that it was a ‘bad thing’.

Because something something.  It would change how he coached or planned or managed.  It would change how players viewed him. Diminish his authority something something.

Rubbish. Pure rubbish.

He’s the most successful rugby coach ever. (Sure we can have an argument about Fred Allen, but that’s a different era, and so on and so forth.) And Shag’s done that by adapting and improving every year, and learning not to rest on laurels. Not a lot of smiling, true, but that’s probably because he’s thinking ten steps ahead of the rest of us.

So give the guy a break, and let him do his thing, and then we’ll talk afterwards about whether it worked or not, and why he’s still a better rugby coach than you or me.



Stephen William Hansen was born on 7 May 1959 in Mosgiel, played 21 matches for Canterbury, was made an honorary chief of Vaiala in Samoa in 2015, and has an 88.42 percent winning record as All Blacks head coach since 2012.

So there’s that.


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