Rugby World Cup: Incoming head coach Scott Robertson asked not to attend All Blacks matches

  • 05/10/2023
Scott Robertson.
Scott Robertson. Photo credit: Getty Images

All Blacks head coach-in-waiting Scott Robertson has reportedly been barred from attending All Blacks World Cup games in France.

During a panel discussion on South Africa's Super Sport, rugby pundit and former All Black Justin Marshall claimed Robertson has been asked not to show his face at any of the team's matches.

The seven-time Super Rugby champion will replace Ian Foster as All Blacks head coach after the tournament.

Marshall says Robertson is seen as "too big a distraction" to the players, who are bidding to win New Zealand's fourth William Webb Ellis trophy.

"Can I tell you something really interesting," Marshall told former Springboks forward Schalk Burger. 

Justin Marshall and All Blacks first-five Richie Mo'unga.
Justin Marshall and All Blacks first-five Richie Mo'unga. Photo credit: Getty Images

"Scott Robertson has been here in France. You would have seen him. He's been floating around.  

"He's not allowed to be at All Blacks games. They feel he's too big a distraction to the current players.  

"All of a sudden they might want to chat to him or might want to impress him, so Ian Foster said to him... he's not being allowed at All Blacks games."

Robertson was shown on the broadcast at one of Fiji's pool games but has otherwise kept a low profile.

Burger suggested there'd been "no love lost" between Robertson and his predecessor Foster in a scenario out of character for the All Blacks.

"I know. We help each other," Marshall replied.

The claims are likely to reignite the precarious situation, which saw Robertson appointed to succeed Foster with the World Cup still on the horizon.

In March, NZ Rugby announced Robertson had signed a four-year deal through until the end of 2027. Foster chose not to re-apply for his role.