Scarlets head coach Wayne Pivac will succeed Warren Gatland as Wales coach on a four-year deal.
Gatland is stepping down after the 2019 World Cup in Japan and will be replaced by his fellow New Zealander.
Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) chairman Gareth Davies and chief executive Martyn Phillips announced the appointment at a scheduled press conference on Monday.
“It’s both a huge honour and a privilege to have been asked to be the next Wales coach,” said Pivac, whose impressive coaching CV includes a hat-trick of National Provincial Championship titles with Auckland, before being voted New Zealand coach of the year in 2003, an international stint with Fiji – where he won the Pacific Tri-Nations (’04) and the 2005 RWC Sevens – and lifting the Guinness Pro12 trophy with the Scarlets in 2017.
⌛ The wait is over: Wales’ next head coach revealed… #WelcomeWayne
— Welsh Rugby Union 🏉 (@WelshRugbyUnion) July 9, 2018
“I know I’m following in the footsteps of someone who is held in extremely high regard, not only by the Welsh public, but also by the players who have played under him and I will be doing my best to protect the legacy which Warren Gatland, with the help of those players, will inevitably leave behind.
“What Martyn Phillips has achieved here is fairly unique in world sport, I have a further 12 months to dedicate my time to the Scarlets and, in the background, the necessary plans and preparations can be put in place to ensure a smooth transition after the World Cup.
“To be able to complete the process this far in advance helps the Scarlets, helps Wales and affords me the luxury of time in which to prepare in earnest for one of the biggest jobs in the world game.
“I’ll do everything in my power to reward the two men alongside me here today (Gareth Davies and Martyn Phillips) who have put their faith in me, but also to live up to the expectations of the hugely passionate and knowledgeable rugby loving Welsh public.
“It will be an almighty challenge, but one that I’m more than ready for and one that I will relish.”
Two more New Zealanders – Glasgow’s Dave Rennie and Crusaders’ Scott Robinson – had also been linked.