Rugby World Cup 2019: Ian Foster still frontrunner for All Blacks coaching job - Stu Wilson

All Blacks great Stu Wilson has endorsed assistant Ian Foster as the next national coach, despite the shock loss to England in the Rugby World Cup semi-finals.

The dream of a three-peat of titles crashed to earth with a 19-7 drubbing that left the focus firmly on who would replace outgoing coach Steve Hansen after this tournament.

Wilson told The AM Show that Foster had been groomed for the job and one result would not change that process.

"They've had a succession plan," he said. "The interesting part is who will partner with him and I think Scott Roberts, the Crusaders coach, should go in there.

"Have a look at Jamie Joseph and see what his contract status is in Japan. They're not going to make Scott Robertson the All Blacks coach just because we lost a semi-final.

"You have to look at Steve Hansen's record - 106 tests he's coached in eight years and only lost 10. No other coach has done that."

rwc playoffs
Photo credit: Newshub.

Hansen was assistant to Sir Graham Henry, when the All Blacks broke a 24-year World Cup drought at Eden Park in 2011.

Foster has been his right-hand man over a successful tenure that included a 2015 World Cup defence - the first time a team has won back-to-back titles.

"Foster's the next one on board," said Wilson. "And I would say Scott Robertson would be his assistant."

Not for the first time, he also tipped Sam Cane as the next All Blacks captain, when Kieran Read steps away next week. 

But Wilson, himself a former All Blacks captain, was disappointed that the team bowed out of contention without showing their true abilities.

"When we do lose games in the black jersey, we tend to play a bit of rugby," he told The AM Show. "On Saturday night, we played no rugby - we were completely hosed out by a well-oiled England machine.

"We lost the haka. We normally always win the haka, but they outplayed us there and I think we got a bit spooked.

"But the thing that really annoyed me was that we didn't play any footy. For 80 minutes, we didn't fire a shot."

Wilson said coaches and players needed to pick themselves up for the third-fourth playoff, if only to earn their paychecks.

"We all have bad days. Sometimes, you just have to go to work the next day and deliver the goods.

"The All Blacks are employees of NZ Rugby. Get out of bed, go to work, play for third and fourth, try and redeem yourself, play some rugby that we know you can, have a good game against Wales and come home.

"You've got a job to do, you may not like it, but if you want to pick your paycheck up, you've got to do it, boys." 

Watch this video for the full interview and join us at 10pm Friday for live updates of the All Blacks v Wales Rugby World Cup third-fourth playoff match.