Tana Umaga to join Blues as coaching consultant

Tana Umaga coached Blues between 2016 and 2018
Tana Umaga coached Blues between 2016 and 2018

The Blues have announced that former New Zealand international Tana Umaga will rejoin the club as a Coaching Consultant.

His new role with the club will begin from 1st December and will run for seven months.

He will now create development programmes for the Blues assistant coaches, as well as testing the Head Coach and Forward Coach on team planning, strategy and delivery.

He will also be analysing and assessing individual player development while observing and reviewing game plans and performances.

“I have enjoyed the challenge with our business but have the opportunity to return to rugby, as well as retain my other business interests," he told the club's official website.

“Part of the role around the team environment and culture is something that is dear to me and I enjoy, while the coach and player development work and assessment is a new challenge, which I look forward to.”

Umaga had already worked with Blues as head coach between 2016 and 2018 and had worked with numerous sides including Toulon, Samoa, Counties Manukau and New Zealand Under 20 side.

Blues CEO, Andrew Hore, expressed his delight with Umaga joining their coaching group for the 2023 season.

“Tana has retained his contact with the club and we have always said that our door will remain open to him,” said Hore.

“He is in a position now and has the want to re-join our group, which links him to the coaches he enjoys a close relationship with.

“That said, Tana has a different role with the club and while he will work closely with many aspects of the team and club, he will also take a helicopter role to critically analyse key aspects of team performance.

“In that respect he will work directly with our coaching group and team as well as our General Manager of Rugby, Josh Blackie.