Mitch sticking with Force

John Mitchell wants to extend his three year contract with the Western Force and is not interested in the Welsh national job.

Mitchell told the BBC radio that the national coach should come from that country. The former All Blacks coach was Clive Woodward’s assistant for three years in the build-up to the 1999 World Cup.

“It’s a real no-goer for me at this moment,” Mitchell told BBC radio. “I’m enjoying what I’m doing and my family are settled. It’s been a fantastic experience and challenge to take on a new organisation. I’ve got a lot young guys who have never been at this level before. I’m lucky I’ve got an organisation that’s very much thinking long-term, so I’m really grateful for that.

“I’ve got a three-year contract and I’m totally committed to that. I’ll be looking for a further tenure after my three years so I’m in no hurry to move anywhere.”

Mitchell won 24 out of 28 tests as coach of the All Blacks, but his team lost to Australia in the World Cup semi-final and he was fired.

He said he was not interested in coaching Wales.

“I’m still a great believer that a national coach should come from that country,” Mitchell said. “It’s all very well having expertise from other nations, but I think you get far more passion and sense of community from a national coach that comes from that country.”

Mitchell backed Llanelli Scarlets’ coach Gareth Jenkins as the next Welsh coach.

“He totally understands the passion and the personality of the Welsh and what it takes to make them click. I think he would be an outstanding candidate. But a head coach is only as good as the support team he builds around him. He can’t do it on his own.”