Maori All Blacks Appoint Legendary All Black Ross Filipo as New Head Coach for Japan Tour

The Maori All Blacks have appointed former All Black Ross Filipo as their new head coach, as the team prepares for an upcoming tour of Japan. Filipo, a Maori All Black himself in 2005, brings a wealth of coaching experience from both New Zealand and Japan, and is tasked with guiding the team to success on the international stage.

Former All Black Ross Filipo Appointed as New Maori All Blacks Head Coach Ahead of Japan Tour

Waikato head coach Ross Filipo, himself a Maori All Black in 2005, has been selected as the new head coach for the Maori All Blacks as they prepare for an upcoming tour of Japan.

Filipo, who has coaching experience in both Japan and New Zealand, led Waikato to the 2021 National Provincial Championship and currently serves as an assistant coach for the Chiefs under Clayton McMillan. He will be joined on the Maori All Blacks’ June tour by fellow Chiefs assistant and former All Black Roger Randle, as well as Greg Feek.

“When I received the news that I was successful, I was excited about the opportunity to again add to the legacy of the Maori All Blacks, but in a coaching capacity,” Filipo expressed. “I understand there is a huge responsibility attached to this role and will do my absolute best to ensure our traditions are protected and preserved. I also hope to inspire young Maori with our on-field performances.”

The 45-year-old Filipo faces the task of guiding the Maori All Blacks in their first campaign since their 2022 two-Test series against Ireland, which saw the visitors secure a historic series win over the All Blacks despite the Maori squad splitting the series one win apiece.

The Maori All Blacks can take inspiration from the All Blacks XV’s victorious 2022 tour of Japan, but the squad itself boasts a wealth of winning experience, having claimed victories over Fiji, Samoa, Moana Pasifika, and Ireland since 2019.

For Filipo, this appointment marks his first foray into the international coaching arena, following his Super Rugby Pacific coaching experience and distinguished playing career with the Crusaders and Chiefs.

The Maori All Blacks’ Japan tour kicks off on June 29 in Tokyo, with the second match scheduled for July 6.

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