Rugby: Steve Hansen's future set to play out in Japan in rugby director role

Steve Hansen, current All Black coach.
Steve Hansen, current All Black coach. Photo credit: Photosport

Steve Hansen's future beyond the 2019 Rugby World Cup looks likely to be in Japan.

The All Blacks coach will step down from the post he has held since 2012 after the tournament, also in Japan.

Hansen has been linked to the director-of-rugby role at the Toyota Verblitz club, with Waratahs assistant Simon Cron reportedly joining him.

The Sydney Morning Herald (SMH) reports Cron will replace current coach Jake White, when Hansen and All Blacks skipper Kieran Read arrive later this year.

SMH reports Cron is one of the most highly rated coached across the ditch, after transforming the once-laughable Waratahs forward pack into a set-piece dynamo in 2019.

The NSW side remains the only blemish on the Crusaders record this season, when they were thoroughly out-muscled in Sydney in March.

Earlier this month, the Daily Telegraph suggested Cron wanted a head coach role in 2020, which was unlikely in Australia, so the lure of working with Hansen and Read could prove too enticing to turn down.

Cron is the nephew of long-standing All Blacks scrum coach Mike Cron, a confidant of Hansen's.