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Cape Town based Super Rugby franchise the Stormers have announced that former Springbok back Robbie Fleck has been appointed as their interim head coach.
Fleck’s appointment comes after Eddie Jones left his position to become England head coach.
Former All Black coach John Mitchell was extensively linked to the vacant Stormers job and several candidates were considered for the job but the Western Province Rugby Union has decided to go with one of their own.
Fleck, who has been an assistant coach for the franchise since 2010, has been acting as the Stormers’ coaching co-ordinator since the departure of coach Eddie Jones to England.
Fleck had a highly successful 2015 season as head coach to the WP Under-21 team, losing only one game on the way to securing the Provincial U21 trophy this year.
Commenting on the appointment, WPRFU President Thelo Wakefield said: “WP Director of Rugby, Gert Smal, has done a thorough investigation into all available and interested coaches for the position. Robbie Fleck is a Western Province man through-and-through.
“He understands the environment having had extensive experience as an assistant coach at Super Rugby level and as a former WP, Stormers and Springbok player. In addition, he showed his mettle as a head coach this year, dominating the U21 competition. He deserves his opportunity and we are proud to be able to grow one of our own. ”
The collective coaching approach that has been in place for the entire Stormers pre-season, has seen all the union’s senior coaches working together to ensure the alignment of playing style and coaching methodology. Fleck will continue to draw on the skills and support of all the senior coaches at Western Province.
Director of Rugby Gert Smal added: “We will all continue to provide maximum support and back-up to Robbie and wish him well as he takes the reigns. We will reassess the Super Rugby coaching position at the end of the 2016 Stormers season again. ”
Commenting on his appointment as interim head coach, Robbie Fleck said: “As a Province man it’s a massive honour and a privilege.
“I am really appreciative of the faith been shown in me and in conjunction with all my colleagues will continue to prepare the squad on the path chosen. “
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