All Blacks: Departing Steve Hansen set to join Japanese club Toyota Verblitz

Departing All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has emerged as the leading candidate to sign with Japanese rugby club Toyota Verblitz after the Rugby World Cup.

According to Sydney's Daily Telegraph, Hansen is set to become director of rugby at the club - the same team that's signed All Blacks captain Kieran Read.

The report says Hansen wants Waratahs assistant coach Simon Cron to become the team's head coach when he takes over.

The side's currently being coached by Jake White, who led South Africa to World Cup glory in 2007, but 55-year-old is expected to leave at the end of the next season.

Cron - who is off-contract at the end of the Super Rugby season - has not yet decided on his future, although the lure of working with Hansen and lack of head coaching options are reportedly weighing on his side.

He's also the nephew of All Blacks scrum coach Mike Cron, and is well-connected in New Zealand.

Hansen confirmed last year he's stepping down as All Blacks coach, having been in the role since 2012.