Guinness Pro12: Scarlets appoint Wayne Pivac as head coach

Guinness Pro12: Scarlets confirms that the region's new assistant coach Wayne Pivac is set to become head coach

Scarlets have confirmed that the region’s new assistant coach Wayne Pivac will take over the reins as head coach in west Wales.

New Zealander Pivac, who joined the region last month, will take over from former Irish international Simon Easterby after the Scarlets agreed to release the current head coach from his role to allow him to pursue one of his biggest career ambitions.

Players are itching to implement some of the new plays that we’re throwing in and we’re itching to see them do that

Wayne Pivac

Pivac, who was involved with Auckland Rugby for an impressive 15 years, also led Fiji as director of rugby for the national side from 2004-2006 coaching both the 15’s and 7’s including through a World Cup.

During his time with Fiji, the Sevens team won the 2005 Rugby World Cup.

He was head coach of Northland Rugby Union, earning them promotion in his first season at the helm in 1997.

He won three provincial titles during his tenure with Auckland with back-to-back provincial titles in New Zealand in 2002 and 2003. He was named NZRU Coach of the Year in 2003.

Pivac said: “Joining the Scarlets was an exciting challenge for me. I am honoured that the Scarlets have the faith and belief in me to take the squad forward and build on the good work and solid foundations that Simon and his team have put in place.

“The supporters here are probably no different to back in New Zealand. They’re very passionate and love their rugby and really want the team to do well. I’m looking forward to hopefully giving them something to cheer about this season.

“There were two factors why I chose Scarlets, the fact that Simon Easterby jumped on a plane and came to New Zealand rather than a lot of talks going on for a long period of time.

“As a young boy growing up listening to the All Blacks play Llanelli in 1972 on the radio back home, I’ve never forgotten that moment. Knowing the Scarlets has a proud history, like the Union I’ve come from, was important to me and coming to an area where they live and breathe rugby like home.”

Pivac continued: “Training has been fantastic so far, obviously the weather’s helped! It’s been very much like home to be honest.

“Now we’ve had 3 weeks with the team, the players are responding to what we’re putting in and I’m looking forward to the season starting. Players are itching to implement some of the new plays that we’re throwing in and we’re itching to see them do that. There are exciting times ahead.”

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