Plumtree steps up at Hurricanes

07 March 2018 04:54:10 EST

John Plumtree has been confirmed as the man to replace Chris Boyd as Hurricanes head coach.

Plumtree will succeed Boyd at the end of the Super Rugby campaign and has been handed a three-year contract by the Wellington franchise.

He has been Boyd's assistant since 2015 and will now finally get the top job.

Plumtree, who's previously coached Swansea and Wellington and coached the Sharks in the Currie Cup for five seasons, said: "For a long time now I've had the Hurricanes head coaching role in my sights. I've had to go around the world a couple of times before it's happened, but I just feel absolutely privileged."

He will have Jason Holland as his assistant, with Holland stepping up from his role as backs coach, while existing forwards coaches Richard Watt and Dan Cron are also likely to stay on.

Plumtree said he would not be changing his coaching philosophy, which he feels has always worked for him.

Speaking of the transition at the end of the campaign when Boyd leaves to coach Northampton, he added: "As much as we think alike in many respects I'm a different man, so there will be a few changes. But there'll be a lot of continuity in what we do."

Meanwhile, Highlanders coach Aaron Mauger has made two changes to his starting side for their meeting with the Stormers on Friday.

Uncapped Tevita Nabura has come into the team on the left wing in place of Tevita Li, while Liam Coltman will start at hooker in place of Ash Dixon, who has a back injury.

Hooker Greg Pleasants-Tate comes on to the bench to cover Coltman, while loose forward/lock Shannon Frizell and halfback Josh Renton have also been included in the 23.

The Highlanders are 1/10 to beat the Stormers, who are 11/2.

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