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Plumtree returns to the Shark tank

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Plumtree returns to the Shark tank
Monday July 31 2006
'The Sharks are thrilled to welcome John back to Durban'
Former Natal (now Sharks) flank John Plumtree will return to Durban, after an absence of almost 10 years, to join the Sharks' coaching team. He will join head coach Dick Muir on November 1, after signing a two-year contract as assistant coach, replacing current forwards' coach Theo Oosthuizen.

Due to work commitments, Oosthuizen is unable to extend his contract with the Sharks. He has been a great contributor to the Sharks' cause, and his work with the forwards has yielded fantastic results, both in the Super 14 and Currie Cup.

As a player, Plumtree represented Hawke's Bay and Taranaki in New Zealand, before moving to South Africa, playing for the Sharks in 80 matches from 1988 to 1997, including winning two Currie Cup medals - in 1990 and again in 1996.

He is currently coaching the Wellington Lions in the Air New Zealand Cup and will leave at the end of the season to take up the position of assistant coach with the Sharks.

Malcolm Holmes, Wellington Rugby CEO, said: "We're very disappointed to be losing John, but we fully understand the reasons why he has decided to make this move. He has very strong family and personal links with Durban and wore the Natal jersey for six seasons.

"I would like to thank John for the massive contribution he has made to Wellington Rugby. We have enjoyed a very successful period with him at the helm, reaching two home NPC finals and turning a very young squad into a genuine force in provincial rugby, developing All Blacks and future All Blacks along the way."

After retiring, he coached Swansea, spending five years with the Welsh side, winning the Welsh Cup in 1998-99 and the Welsh championship in 1997-98 and 2000-2001.

At the end of 2001, he returned to the country of his birth, New Zealand, spending his first months back as new All Black coach John Mitchell's video analyst before spending four years with Wellington from 2002-6, taking the Lions to the NPC final in 2003 and 2004, losing to Auckland and Canterbury respectively.

Sharks' CEO Brian van Zyl said that the Sharks are "thrilled" to welcome Plumtree back to Durban.

"As a player he made a huge contribution in his time with us, and he brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise as a coach, having proved himself variously in Wales and New Zealand. We look forward to his input as Assistant Coach to Dick Muir."


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