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Matfield: Turning down Bulls jobs was in best interest of my family

Victor Matfield said the decision to turn down the job was a difficult one and that other business interests outside of rugby his family up for the next two decades.

Victor Matfield. Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Former Springbok captain Victor Matfield says the decision to pull out of the Blue Bulls Super Rugby coaching role was a decision that would secure his family’s livelihood for the next 20 years.

Matfield was in prime position to take over the reigns at his old stomping ground, Loftus, but on Tuesday the three-time Super Rugby champions announced that Pote Human would be the man in charge, taking over from New Zealander John Mitchell who left the Franchise after one season in charge to take up the defence coach position with England Rugby.

Speaking at the BrightRock Players Choice Awards, Matfield said the decision to turn down the job was a difficult one and that other business interests outside of rugby would set him and his family up for the next two decades.

“It’s always been a dream and passion of mine to one day coach the Bulls and it was a difficult decision to turn down the job. The business opportunities outside of rugby were just too good to turn down and it was a life decision for the next 20 years. At this stage, the business isn’t at a place where I could leave it, but it was a great opportunity that I couldn’t just let go.”

The lanky 41-year-old played over 140 Super Rugby matches for the Pretoria franchise, together with 127 Test caps for the Springboks in an illustrious career that saw him win three Super Rugby titles, a World Cup and a British and Irish Lions series victory in 2009.

Matfield says that Human is a good enough candidate for the job and will lead the franchise well next season.

“I think Pote is a great guy, the players love him, he has all the experience and I think he has the type of players that will suit his management style.”

The Bulls will open their Super Rugby account against the Stormers on Saturday 16 February at Loftus.