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Vern Cotter appointed Fiji rugby coach
00:19 am GMT+12, 29/01/2020, Fiji

Former Scotland mentor Vern Cotter is the new head coach of the Fiji rugby team.

New Zealand-born Cotter succeeds Australian John McKee who was head coach from 2014 and whose contract ended in December.

Cotter coached French club Clermont to the Top 14 title in 2010 after leading them to the final in three previous seasons.

He has coached Montpellier in France since 2017, guiding them to the Top 14 final in 2018. His contract at Montpellier ends in June, ahead of Fiji's first Test of the season against Tonga on 04 July.

Cotter had a 53 per cent success rate in his four years as Scotland head coach, winning 19 of his 36 matches in charge.

That was the best record of any Scotland national coach since Ian McGeechan left the role in 1993 and included home wins over Wales and Ireland in the 2016 Six Nations tournament.

"Following an extensive recruitment process with many outstanding applications, the board is pleased to have secured such an exceptional candidate in Vern Cotter for the top job of Flying Fijians head coach," Fiji Rugby Union chairman Francis Kean said.

"Cotter presented a thorough and detailed plan to take the team to new levels of success and we were impressed by his vision and expectations of what can be achieved by the program."

Cotter wasn't present Tuesday at the news conference in Suva at which it was announced he has been signed to a three-year contract.

"I'm excited about the opportunity to coach the Flying Fijians and to be involved in the development of Rugby in Fiji," he said in a statement.

Cotter has a strong knowledge of Fiji's top players, having coached Nemani Nadolo, Nemani Nagusa, Napolioni Nalaga and Sitiveni Sivivatu during his time in France.

SOURCE: AAP/PACNEWS


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