25 Nov 2015

Sport: New Manu Samoa coach expected by Christmas

12:34 pm on 25 November 2015

The Samoa Rugby Union hopes to appoint a new national head coach before the end of the year.

Stephen Betham stepped down following the country's disappointing Rugby World Cup campaign, where the Manu finished fourth in their group and failed to qualify automatically for the 2019 tournament.

Manu Samoa coach Stephen Betham.

Stephen Betham quit as Samoa coach after the World Cup. Photo: AFP

Japan centre Male Sau holds off Samoa's centre Paul Perez during their Rugby World Cup pool match.

Japan were among the teams to beat Samoa at the World Cup. Photo: AFP

SRU Chief Executive Officer Faleomavaega Vincent Fepuleai says a number of high profile and interesting candidates have put their names forward, with the bulk of those coming from overseas.

"It was closed a couple of weeks ago. The independent committee is working on that and going through their process of shortlisting and the interviews. We've had 18 or 19 applicants - we're hoping to make an appointment before Christmas and we're hoping the right person will take us over the next four years".

Faleomavaega says whoever gets the job will have to live in Samoa and the SRU is willing to pay what is required to secure the best person for the role.