Tietjens commits to NZ Sevens until 2016

(IRB.COM) Wednesday 4 April 2012
 Tietjens commits to NZ Sevens until 2016
Tietjens has coached New Zealand to four Commonwealth Games gold medals

New Zealand Sevens coach Gordon Tietjens has signed a new four year deal with the New Zealand Rugby Union (NZRU), crucially securing his magic Sevens touch through to the Rio de Janerio Olympics.

NZRU Chief Executive Steve Tew announced Tietjens' decision today and said retaining his unique and unquestionable skills and experience through to 2016 was an important ingredient in the plan to win gold in the first ever Olympic Sevens contest.

"One of the key components of our Olympic campaign is to have the very best coaches on board. We now have that in Gordon, who is without a doubt the world's best Sevens coach," said Tew.

"In partnership with High Performance Sport New Zealand we have taken big steps this year in our quest to be Olympic champions in 2016 in both the men's and women's campaigns.

"Signing Gordon for this extended period through to 2016 not only reflects the uniqueness of the Olympic Games but also his commitment to Sevens rugby in New Zealand.

"Sevens has been a stepping stone for many great All Blacks and forms an important part of our rugby landscape and we are delighted to have Gordon on board to continue that tradition."

New Zealand have won nine of the 12 World Series to date, and currently lead the 2011/12 HSBC Sevens World Series by six points ahead of Fiji with just two rounds to go. 

This season Tietjens has led his side to five of the seven Cup finals and he admits he was delighted to be taking the team through to the Olympics.

"I still have the same passion and enjoyment for the game of Sevens that I had when I began coaching and I am incredibly proud of the role Sevens has played in the development of rugby players in New Zealand," added Tietjens.

"Taking home four Commonwealth Games gold medals has given me some of the most memorable moments of my coaching career.  Taking part in the Olympic Games will be the pinnacle of my career and something that all coaches and athletes aspire to."