Franco Smith-Italy Head Coach. Photo Courtesy/Supersport.

Former Springboks back named Italy Head Coach

Former South Africa fly-half Franco Smith has been handed the Italy head coach role on a permanent basis.

The Italian rugby federation has not revealed the details of his deal but he is reportedly set to coach until after the 2023 World Cup in France.

Smith has been the interim head coach leading Italy in the 2020 Six Nations after Conor O’Shea quit to take up a role with the English RFU.

The former Cheetahs boss will have Marius Goosen as his assistant while Giampiero De Carli  will lead the forwards.

Alessandro Troncon will lead the backs with Quintin Kruger and Giovanni Sanguin coordinating physical preparation.

Smith led Italy in three Six Nations games that all ended in losses. He coached Free State Cheetahs as a backs coach before moving to back to Treviso as head coach.


He guided them to two National Championship of Excellence titles in 2008/09 and 2009/10, as well as one Coppa Italia in 2010 and one Italian Supercup in 2009.

After returning to SA in 2013, he returned to Cheetahs as a backs coach and also served as a Head Coach at Shimlas.

He was confirmed as a Free State Cheetahs boss.

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Luvisia Tisa

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