Rugby

Kiwi coach Keane joining Connacht

2017-02-20 18:04

London - Former New Zealand centre Kieran Keane has agreed to take over as Connacht head coach at the end of the season.

Chiefs' attack coach Keane will leave Super Rugby to replace current Connacht manager Pat Lam, who is to join English club Bristol ahead of the 2017-18 campaign.

Keane will find himself competing in the Celtic League with his current Chiefs boss Dave Rennie, who plans to take the reins at Glasgow next term.

"During my recent trip to the West of Ireland I had the chance to meet many people within Connacht Rugby and I was immediately taken by the genuine passion they have for the people they represent and the ambition they have to achieve so much more," Keane said.

"It was clear very early on in our discussions that Connacht Rugby was a good fit for me and I am looking forward to the challenge ahead and to working with the players and everyone associated with the club."

Keane featured in six New Zealand matches during a 10-year stint with Canterbury but never won a Test cap for the All Blacks.

The former school teacher enjoyed a fruitful spell as Tasman Makos head coach that followed a stint as an assistant at the Highlanders in 2011.

Connacht CEO Willie Ruane added: "Kieran is a highly experienced head coach with a winning track record and a proven ability in identifying talent and maximising the full potential of that talent.

"His ambitious and exciting brand of rugby is also consistent with the way Connacht Rugby and in particular our players want to continue to play the game into the future."

Read more on:    rugby
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