New Wallabies coach Dave Rennie has hinted he may not stay after the 2023 World Cup, with the New Zealander suggesting it would be better to have an Australian in charge in the future.
The 56-year-old took charge this month after seeing out his commitments with the Glasgow Warriors. He replaced Michael Cheika who departed following the country’s disappointing 2019 World Cup quarter-final exit.
No other Australian coach was available or considered up to the task, with Rennie appointed to lift the Wallabies from their lowly seventh world ranking and help groom a successor.
“I’m not certain,” he told The Australian newspaper Monday when asked if he planned to be around for the 2027 World Cup, which Australia are keen to host.
“The ideal scenario is that the next coach is Australian and there needs to be some thought around that. If there is someone ready to go after the (2023) World Cup, that may be in the best interests of Australian rugby.
“You can’t think too far ahead in this game,” added Rennie, who is on deal that takes him to the next World Cup.
“I’m fully committed to the (2023) World Cup but what happens beyond that … there has to be an emphasis around identifying and developing other coaches to coach Australia.”
The Wallabies have almost exclusively had Australians in charge, with New Zealander Robbie Deans the last foreigner at the helm, for five years from 2008.
With the coronavirus pandemic causing chaos with the international calendar, Rennie is still not sure when his first game will be.
In the meantime, he has been closely following Super Rugby AU, the domestic Australian competition that replaced the southern hemisphere tournament after it was shutdown because of COVID-19 in March.
With three rounds complete, he was impressed with the quality of last weekend’s games, particularly some of the new talent on show such as ACT Brumbies’ centre Noah Lolesio and New South Wales Waratahs’ fly-half Will Harrison.
“There is a lot to like about both these young boys,” he said, adding that “it is a good blend of experienced guys who are playing good footy at the moment and some really good kids coming through”.