Sir Gordon Tietjens at the press conference confirming his appointment this afternoon and his move to Samoa
APIA, SAMOA – FRIDAY 14 OCTOBER 2016: The former New Zealand rugby sevens coach Sir Gordon Tietjens has signed on as the new head coach of the Samoa sevens.
The Samoa Rugby Union confirmed the appointment at a press conference in Apia this afternoon.
Tietjens will be assisted by former Sevens Coach Stephen Betham who won the World Series in 2010, with Manu Sina Coach Ramsay Tomokino as team manager.
He’ll take charge of the side in January with Betham to control the side for the first two rounds of the World Series in Dubai and South Africa in December.
Tietjens and the Samoa Rugby Union are finalising the details f his contract which is likely to be for a 2 year term.
Tietjens said: “I am hugely excited to be joining the boys in blue. Samoa Sevens has always represented their country with pride, passion and a great natural talent in rugby and I am massively motivated to help them achieve their goal to be a consistent top performer on the world stage. I have some commitments I need to complete before making the transition to Samoa, but this will be a great opportunity to watch some local rugby.”
The 60-year-old spent 22 years in charge of the New Zealand sevens team, stepping down from the role in September after their fifth place finish at the Rio Olympics.
Tietjens who was knighted in 2013 is the most successful sevens coach of all time, leading New Zealand to four Commonwealth Games gold medals (1998, 2002, 2006 and 2010), two World Cups (2001 and 2013), and 12 of the 17 world series crowns.