21 Jan 2015

Sport: Tonga hoping to hear from Jake White soon

12:15 pm on 21 January 2015

The Tonga Rugby Union expect to find out soon whether former Springboks coach Jake White will be available to help with their World Cup campaign.

The 51 year old worked as a technical advisor for the 'Ikale Tahi's November tour and was praised by Tongan head coach Mana Otai for his influence on the team.

White signed a six-month deal with French club Montpellier in December and has held discussions about rejoining Tonga later this year.

Tonga Rugby's High Performance Manager, Peter Harding, says, while White enjoyed his time with them, there's no guarantee he will be back.

"This is the dfficulty the island teams and smaller teams have is that for that period it's very hard for a professional coach to take three months out of their coaching gig to work with an island team just for that three month World Cup period. He's given us an indication that he would like to. He's signed for six months with Montpellier but if they put a whacking great load of Euros in front of him he's a professional coach and he will probably sign a contract there. If he doesn't come then we will actually sign a coach of similar pedigree".

Peter Harding says they expect to receive a definitive answer from Jake White in the coming weeks.