Brown named Highlanders coach
Wellington - Reigning Super Rugby champions Highlanders on Thursday named former New Zealand flyhalf Tony Brown as their coach for the 2017 season, replacing Japan-bound Jamie Joseph.
Joseph will leave the Highlanders at the end of the season to take over as the head coach of the Japan national team.
The Highlanders said Brown will oversee the team on a one-year deal before heading to Japan himself to join the Brave Blossoms' coaching set-up under Joseph.
"I wasn't sure the timing was right for me, but having spoken to people inside and outside the organisation, I know now that this is too good an opportunity to pass up," said current Highlanders assistant coach Brown.
Highlanders chief executive Roger Clark said Brown's 2017 appointment would give the Dunedin-based team time to look for a long-term coach.
The team's links to Japan will remain, with Mark Hammett returning from Tokyo to work as an assistant coach until 2019.
Former Hurricanes coach Hammett has been in charge of Japanese Super Rugby debutants the Sunwolves this year and will take over the Brave Blossoms on a temporary basis this month.