22 Oct 2009

All Blacks coaches getting help

8:18 am on 22 October 2009

The All Blacks are taking advice from an unusual Australian source ahead of their Bledisloe Cup rugby clash with the Wallabies in Tokyo on Saturday week.

Sydney Swans assistant coach John Longmire has joined the New Zealand camp in Auckland, using his AFL expertise to work with the All Blacks backs on their kicking skills.

He is helping their kicking and skills expert Mick Byrne, himself a former AFL player who worked with the Wallabies when they won the 1999 World Cup.

Longmire, who will take over as Swans head coach in 2011, is there as a continuation of a working relationship started earlier this year between the New Zealand Rugby Union and the AFL club.

All Blacks coach Graham Henry has also brought in former international hooker John Mills to help with scrummaging.

Mills, who represented the All Blacks in two non-Test matches in 1984, was invited by Henry, his former schoolmaster, to help out.

Henry has taken over the role of forwards coach.