Ian Foster’s rugby pedigree might not be as well known outside New Zealand but his numbers speak for themselves. Many share my sentiment that Scott Robertson might have been the better option to lead the All Blacks to the World Cup but Ian Foster was the chosen option.
Ian has been all about rugby for a few decades now and it all started as a player at Waikato. He played a franchise record of 148 games for Waikato. Between 1989 and 1998 he racked up 174 games for Waikato and the Chiefs and also amassed 489 points.
Four years later he stepped into the role of coaching Waikato in 2002/2003 before moving on to the Chiefs where he coached from 2004 to 2011.
During this time he also coached the junior All Blacks from 2005 to 2007.
His record at the Chiefs, which saw them as a prominent team in Super Rugby, landed him the All Blacks assistant coach job in 2012, which he held until 2019.
From 2020 he has been the head coach of the All Blacks but things have not been a fairytale for him as head coach.
The All Blacks are growing in stature and getting back to their best form but his tenure has been rocky.
During his time as head coach, he has a 26/37 record (just over 70% won), which is by far the lowest win percentage for the All Blacks in the past few decades. Rarely have they dipped under 85% for any extended period of time.
The big lowlights in recent times have been the draw to England, the 25% win rate against Ireland, and the 2 losses to Argentina!
There is an uphill battle for him to really stand up and be counted as a worthy All Blacks coach. He does however have the right personnel in his coaching team and the backing of a fanatic rugby nation.