LAFAYETTE, CO. - USA Rugby has named former Springbok Jaque Fourie as the new defense coach for the men's national team 15s. Fourie owns 72 test caps and a Rugby World Cup 2007 title as a player, having spent the 2018 season coaching for Western Force of Global Rapid Rugby.
During his time as a national team player, Fourie participated in coaching clinics, using his expertise as an athlete to help guide and direct up-and-coming players. He then played for the Kobelco Steelers in Japan from 2011 to 2017, where he helped with the defense of the team until his full retirement from playing in 2017. Fourie joined Western Force as a full-time coach almost immediately after in 2018.
Fourie's appointment will begin with the Americas Rugby Championship 2019 where he'll join head coach Gary Gold and staff following a highly successful 2018 campaign for the U.S. men. The new defense coach will be a critical position to fill as the program gears up for Rugby World Cup Japan 2019 where Fourie's fundamental knowledge in defense and ability to relate as a former-player will be a significant benefit to the Eagles.
"I am so excited to be a part of the USA Eagles coaching staff and team in 2019," said Fourie. "They have grown so much in the last year and after playing in three Rugby World Cups myself, I know what a massive honor and privilege it is to be part of one of the biggest sporting events in the world. To do that with this team and as a coach will be amazing."
"We are thrilled to have Jaque Fourie join our coaching team as we dive deep into the Rugby World Cup year," said Dave Hodges, general manager for men's 15s programs. "The defensive coaching position is critically important to us as we work to ensure our team is fully prepared for what will be one of the most competitive World Cups yet. Jaque's leadership skills and ability to relate to our players will be a compliment to head coach Gary Gold's overall team strategy."
Fourie will join the Men's National Team for their first game of the Americas Rugby Championship 2019 against Chile on Feb 2. Following Chile, the Eagles will face Argentina XV in Rio Negro on Feb. 9 and then come home for three games in the USA including Brazil (Feb. 23) in Austin, Texas, as well as Uruguay (March 2) and rival Canada (March 8) in Seattle, Washington. All matches will be broadcast LIVE on FloRugby with tickets to the three matches on home soil available at usarugby.org/tickets.