Henry determined to get Pumas firing
May 31, 2012
Former All Blacks coach Graham Henry will help orchestrate Argentina's Rugby Championship campaign
Former All Blacks boss Graham Henry has vowed to do all he can to help Argentina make an impact on this year's battle for southern hemisphere supremacy.
The World Cup-winning coach linked up with the Pumas this week on a short-term contract that will see him serve as a technical advisor and oversee their eagerly-anticipated entry into the Rugby Championship.
"I am excited about the opportunity to assist in a small way," Henry told reporters in Buenos Aires. "My job with the coaches is to exchange ideas, and help them improve their game."
The 65-year-old stepped down from the New Zealand head coach role following their World Cup triumph but insists retirement was never an option. "Rugby is in my blood. Coaching is like a disease. I like coaching and I like the game. Argentina is a challenge and I enjoy a challenge. I also respect the people here. They are good people, good rugby people, so this is also a privilege for me."
Looking ahead to the daunting challenge of this year's Rugby Championship campaign, Henry added: "I think we should look at this tournament as a great opportunity rather than something we are concerned about. If we are inhibited by the Championship, we will not play well. If we are excited, we will do our best."
Henry's immediate goal is to see the Pumas "score more tries" but is aware they will have to be at their best to upset any of their title rivals - Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
"Argentina are faced with a very important challenge but we need this in order to improve because we can't improve by playing the weakest, we need to play the strongest," he said. "I think that Argentinian rugby is in good shape, as they did well in the last two World Cups.
"We've begun a process, and I'm impressed with all the information that I've received from the coaches. I hope that my ideas will be useful and allow them to continue to improve. This tournament is a big opportunity. We could feel inhibited but we could also give our best."
Argentina will kick off their Rugby Championship campaign against South Africa at the Estadio Malvinas Argentinas in the western city of Mendoza on August 25.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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