Former All Black Mauger quits as Moana Pasifika coach

Former All Black Mauger quits as Moana Pasifika coach

Former All Blacks centre Aaron Mauger quit Monday as head coach of Super Rugby Pacific bottom side Moana Pasifika to spend more time with his family.

The 42-year-old took the reins of the Auckland-based side when they were admitted to the southern hemisphere competition last year and they finished last on the 12-team ladder.

They are last again with two rounds left of the current season.

Mauger, who played 45 Tests for New Zealand and previously coached Otago Highlanders in Super Rugby and English side Leicester Tigers, will remain in charge for their final games against Fijian Drua and the NSW Waratahs.

"I love this team immensely and it has been an absolute privilege to be a part of this special journey for Moana Pasifika and broader movement for the Pasifika community," he said. 

"I have given everything for the cause in testing conditions, but it's now time for me to return home to my family."

“There are some great people within the club, and I hope these gems can be retained to bring continuity to the further development of the club.”

 “Your spirit and support have been hugely uplifting for the team in challenging conditions. Keep the faith and ride the waves with the team, they acknowledge and play for you every week!”

Moana Pasifika chairman Michael Jones paid tribute to Mauger's "passion, hard work and professionalism".

"We are confident that the strong foundation he has helped build will continue to move us forward," he added.

“Under Aaron’s leadership, we have witnessed the growth and progress of our Pasifika players.

His commitment to fostering their skills at a professional level has had significant impact and helped to unearth real talent. 

"Last year, 27 Moana Pasifika players went on to represent their Pacific home nation, 13 in the ‘Ikale Tahi and 14 in Manu Samoa squads, for the Pacific Nations Cup (PNC) in 2022.”

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