Blues need local coaches - Sir Bryan Williams

Sunday Sport 29/04/2018
Photo credit: Photosport.

All Blacks great Sir Bryan Williams has credited the Blues' lack of local coaches for their on-pitch woes.

Following their historic defeat to the Jaguares at Eden Park on Saturday (NZT), the Blues are languishing at the bottom of the New Zealand conference with just two wins from nine games.

They have not made the playoffs since 2011, and have not won the competition since 2003.

Speaking to Andrew Gourdie and Jim Kayes on RadioLIVE, Williams believes the hiring of coaches outside of the Auckland region has been the major downfall.

"With the advent of Super Rugby and Ted (Sir Graham Henry) leaving, suddenly we were getting coaches from outside the region coming in to coach the Blues.

"I'm not against anyone in particular, but we have to look at the Crusaders' ethos and philosophy, they pick the people who understand their culture - they've done it for years and the thing works."

Having coached at the Ponsonby Rugby Club, Williams understands the importance of promoting coaches within the system.

He wants the Blues and Auckland Rugby to get back to their roots, and believes the other franchises' success can be attributed to adopting their earlier philosophy.

"That's not to say other coaches can't do it, but I guess what I really lament is the fact that the Canterbury model, they stole it from Auckland - we had that model beforehand and they realised we had top players, we had coaches who were brought up through the system, true blue Aucklanders who understood what the culture and what the ethos of Auckland rugby was," he said.

"We had a number of coaches who came in from outside - I won't name them; those who've been in rugby a long time will know those names - but it just so happened to coincide with the period where suddenly Auckland rugby and the Blues rugby has gone backwards, and it's not coincidental I don't think.

"We have tended to pick our coaches from within, guys who've both played and have come through the system and understand the culture and that is what the Crusaders have done.

"Quite frankly that's what the Hurricanes themselves are doing with Chris Boyd and John Plumtree and co."

It doesn't get any easier for the Blues, as they head to Sydney to take on Australian Conference leaders the Waratahs, before returning home to host the Hurricanes and Crusaders in back-to-back weeks.

Wallabies star Israel Folau is expected to be fit for the clash, while the Blues continue to their count their growing casualty list.

Listen to the full interview with Sir Bryan Williams above.

Sunday Sport with Andrew Gourdie & Jim Kayes, 2pm - 6pm on RadioLIVE and streaming live to the rova app on Android and iPhone.