Last night it was confirmed long-serving coach Stephen Kearney will replace Andrew McFadden as head coach of the Warriors.
The three-year deal was announced by Vodafone Warriors managing director Jim Doyle.
The club is going through a revamp which will see Andrew McFadden remain as one of Kearney's assistants. Stacey Jones has also been promoted to a new role, while another experienced international coach is set to join the coaching team.
Kearney will finish his assistant coach’s job with the Brisbane Broncos when their 2016 campaign ends. He'll then rejoin the club he made 79 appearances for as a foundation player from 1995-1998.
Doyle says, “We’re delighted we’ve been able to bring Stephen back to Mount Smart Stadium.
He was outstanding during his playing career with the club and then with the Melbourne Storm before moving into coaching.
Stephen has taken the Kiwis to a new level with their successes in the Rugby League World Cup in 2008 and twice in the Four Nations in 2010 and 2014. During his coaching career, he has also worked alongside two of the best coaches the game has seen in Craig Bellamy at the Storm and Wayne Bennett at the Broncos."
Kearney is now helping to prepare the Broncos for their sudden-death NRL playoff against the North Queensland Cowboys this weekend but said he was looking forward to returning to Auckland.
“While I’ve got a job to do here I’m really excited about coming on board at the Vodafone Warriors.
The club means a lot to me from my time there as a player and this a great opportunity to take the football department in a new direction," Kearney says.