Rugby: Wayne Smith linked with Scotland

Wayne Smith.   Picture: Ian Rutherford
Wayne Smith. Picture: Ian Rutherford
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With Aussie Ewen McKenzie ruling himself out as next Scotland rugby coach, focus today switched to New Zealand for Scott Johnson’s successor.

And while former Edinburgh and All Blacks captain Todd Blackadder remains a contender odds were shortening against Wayne Smith.

Smith showed an interest in Scottish rugby by visiting Murrayfield last season while he could be released by Waikato Chiefs where he is assistant coach.

Linked with a position in the England set-up last year, Smith told the ‘Guardian’ newspaper: “I’ve got a two-year contract with the Chiefs but there’s an out-clause for both of us,” he said.

Then, he rejected England overtures seemingly because memories of the 2011 World Cup, in which he was a Kiwi assistant, were too fresh.

“I didn’t want to walk out of the All Blacks with the gameplan under my arm and go to a competing nation.”

But Smith, who had a stint with Northampton, also stated:

“Given a bit of time ... I’d be really interested in coming back to the UK. Coming back is something I’ve wanted to do.”