Find out more about the man in charge of the All Blacks

Who is  Ian Foster: Ten things you should know about the All Blacks coach

Ian Foster has been involved in the All Blacks set-up since 2012 and was appointed head coach in 2019. He will guide the team to the next World Cup in France.

Ten things you should know about Ian Foster

1. Foster was born on 1 May 1965, in Putāruru in the Waikato region of New Zealand, about 65km from Hamilton.

Wayne Smith, another former All Blacks coach, was also born in the area.

2. Foster’s father, Jack, was a barber in Putāruru but changed tack to become a Presbyterian minister early in Foster’s life and moved the family to Dunedin on New Zealand’s South Island.

3. Foster attended Taieri College in Dunedin, where Steve Hansen was a pupil, and Forest View High School in Tokorua, back on the North Island, which ex-All Black wing Richard Kahui attended, as did Quade Cooper.

4. Foster, a fly-half, played 148 times for Waikato, which was clearly a breeding ground for coaches, between 1985 and 1998. Two of his team mates were John Mitchell and Warren Gatland. All three played for Waikato when they beat the British & Irish Lions, captained by Will Carling, 38-10 in 1993.

5. After finishing playing Foster started coaching as the Chiefs’ technical advisor, before becoming assistant coach and then coach at Waikato.

6. Foster was a co-coach of the Junior All Blacks in two spells from 2005 to 2007 and in 2009 when the team was unbeaten in 16 matches.

7. He joined the All Blacks, as an assistant to Steve Hansen, in 2012.

8. Foster started as New Zealand head coach in 2019, taking over from Steve Hansen, and in August 2021 was given a contract extension through to the 2023 Rugby World Cup. Before that longer deal was settled Hansen had been critical of the NZRU for not sorting it out earlier. “They haven’t even appointed him to go to the World Cup yet, which I think is stupid, they need to get it done,” he said.

9. Up to August 2021 the All Blacks had played 11 Tests under Foster’s head stewardship, winning eight. They lost to, and drew with, Australia and also suffered a 25-15 defeat to Argentina. In 2021 they won the Rugby Championship.

10. Foster and his wife Leigh have three grown-up children, eldest Mark, Michaela and Jaime.

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