Ex-All Black appointed Samoa coach

Alama Ieremia (Getty Images)
Alama Ieremia (Getty Images)

Wellington - Samoa have hired former New Zealand international Alama Ieremia to replace coach Stephen Betham, who resigned following the World Cup.

The Samoan Rugby Union (SRU) announced the appointment of the 45-year-old in a statement on Wednesday.

"Ieremia will lead the coaching of all Samoa's national teams as well as coaching the Manu Samoa (national team)," said the SRU statement.

"The recruitment process followed a disappointing Rugby World Cup 2015, where Samoa walked away with their lowest ranking in World Rugby, and the subsequent resignation of former coach Stephen Betham."

Ieremia was born in Samoa but moved to New Zealand at the age of 18 to study at university and play rugby.

A centre, he played international rugby for both Western Samoa and New Zealand, in the 15-a-side code as well as sevens.

He was an assistant coach under Betham having previously had a similar role at the Hurricanes.

Samoa were one of the top eight seeds when the draw was made for the World Cup but they managed only one win in Pool B, defeating minnows the United States 25-16 in their opening match.

However, they then went on to lose 46-6 to South Africa and 26-5 against Japan before restoring some credit in going down only narrowly 36-33 against Scotland in their final group match.

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