Stormers keep faith with Coetzee

Western Province Rugby has backed Stormers coach Allister Coetzee to continue his role.

Stormers coach Allister Coetzee. Picture: Aletta Gardner/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Western Province Rugby bosses have thrown their support behind Stormers head coach Allister Coetzee.

Western Province Rugby Union President Thelo Wakefield unveiled Gert Smal as the union's new director of rugby yesterday, and used the unveiling as an opportunity to confirm that Coetzee would remain as Stormers head coach.

Wakefield said Smal and Coetzee would get a chance to work together before any further decisions were made.

"I would like to reiterate that it is still very early days, and that we would like him to settle into his post and have a good look at his subordinates. Let's give them a fair chance, and give the director a fair chance to make his assessments."

Wakefield said the decision regarding the makeup of the future management team ultimately rested with Smal.

"Part of his job will be to evaluate, make assessments and to make recommendations to the board regarding whether there should be new appointments or not."

Smal, who will oversee all rugby matters at the union, says he's not averse to calling on former players to help turn things around at the union, adding that he wants to tap into the rugby talent and brainpower in the province.

"It will be good to get those guys behind us, because normally the ex-players are the biggest critics. It's important to give them a chance to come in, not to let them tell us how to play the game, but to sit down with the coaches and discuss how to take the game forward.

"We're quite fortunate that in the Western Cape we have a lot of coaching intellect. I think I will touch base with them, and find out if they want to be involved or not."

Smal says he won't mind assisting Coetzee on the coaching side if the need arises.