The Rebels moved to lock in David Wessels amid interest from elsewhere, giving the head coach a two-year contract extension.
Wessels took charge of the Super Rugby club in September 2017, leading them to their best finish – ninth – in his first season at the helm.
Despite having Wessels, who was linked with the vacancy at Welsh club Scarlets in November, under contract until the end of the year, the Rebels moved to extend his deal until the end of 2021.
Rebels chief executive Baden Stephenson praised the changes Wessels had already made in Melbourne.
“The transformation of this club into a genuine high performance rugby program during Dave’s tenure is nothing short of remarkable,” he said in a statement on Thursday.
“His ability to inspire those around him, from assistant coaches to players and backroom staff, is a testament to the leader he is and he is still his own hardest taskmaster.
“His talent and potential as a coach motivated us very strongly to be proactive in making this offer to extend Dave’s contract. He was in demand elsewhere and his recommitment to the club is the greatest endorsement I can offer players, members, partners, fans and the wider Victorian rugby community that we have a lot to be excited about in the years to come.
“We are confident we have an experienced Super Rugby coach who can take us all the way.”
The Rebels begin their season with a clash against the Brumbies on February 15.
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