Joe Schmidt turned down New Zealand approach to sign Ireland extension
NZ Rugby chief Steve Tew confirms offer was made late last year
Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt is reported to have turned down an offer to join the New Zealand coaching ticket last year. Photograph: Toby Melville/Reuters
Schmidt and Foster would then have been in contention to take over from present head coach Steve Hansen when he steps down.
Schmidt decided to stay with Ireland, signing a two-year deal to take him through to the end of next year’s World Cup in Japan.
The 53-year-old announced at the end of the November series, during which Ireland beat the All Blacks, that he will finish coaching at the end of the World Cup to “prioritise family commitments”.
Ireland assistant coach Andy Farrell will take over from Schmidt after the World Cup.