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Sharks circle Reds coach
Brisbane
May 10, 2000

The struggling Natal Sharks have emerged as a contender to sign Queensland Reds coach John Connolly.

The long-time Reds coach refused to comment on the approach by the Sharks, but it has certainly given Connolly plenty to think about with the Queensland Rugby Union to advertise for the Reds post next month.

Connolly has given no indication yet if he will re-apply for the job, but his superb record will still hold him in good stead should he choose to extend his time with the Reds. There are several local coaches believed to be interested and the QRU is unlikely to look overseas.

Sharks officials are believed to have approached Connolly when he was in Durban recently preparing the Reds for their games against the Sharks and the Cats.

The Sharks are struggling with just one win after 10 games and coach Hugh Reece Edwards signed for just one year after replacing Ian McIntosh. The Sharks first approached Connolly in 1998 to replace McIntosh.

Since then and after also having his fingers seriously burnt in his quest to become Wallaby coach, Connolly has been linked with moves to Ireland and also to a possible fourth Australian Super 12 team.

Depending his decision, Saturday's game against the Blues could be Connolly's last Super12 game in charge of the Reds. After the Super 12, Queensland will contest the National Ricoh Championship plus have one game against Argentina on Tuesday, June 13.

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