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Former All Black Gibbes to coach Ulster

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 13/02/2017

Former All Blacks forward Jono Gibbes is the new head coach of Irish club Ulster after signing a two-year contract.

Gibbes will leave French club Clermont Auvergne, where he has been an assistant coach since 2014. He was signed in France until 2018 but activated a release clause in the event of being named a head coach.

Gibbes, who replaces Neil Doak, has coached previously in Ireland. He was an assistant to Ireland coach Joe Schmidt for three years when the Kiwi was in charge at Leinster.

The 40-year-old spent six seasons at Leinster, helping the club win three European championship titles.

Ulster boast several Irish internationals on the roster, along with 16-Test All Blacks outside back Charles Piutau.

Gibbes is a former captain of the Chiefs and the Maori All Blacks, playing as a flanker and lock.

Seven of his eight Tests were in 2004 before he signed off with a bench appearance in the first Test against the touring British and Irish Lions the following year.

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