Robbie Deans will look to reclaim the Super 14 title with the Crusaders before a likely move into international rugby after agreeing a contract extension with the six-time Super rugby champions this week.
The Crusaders won the inaugural Super 14 crown in 2006, but lost to to eventual champions the Bulls in last seasons semi-finals.
The former All Blacks assistant’s success at Jade Stadium has led returning Australia Rugby Union Chief Executive John O’Neill to target Deans as a potential successor to John Connolly.
He is also likely to appear on the New Zealand Rugby Union shortlist to replace Graham Henry, should the former Wales boss return to Europe after the World Cup.
Deans would prefer to take over the Kiwi job, but has not ruled anything out after the 2008 season concludes.
Asked by the Sunday News if he wanted Henry’s job over the Australian role he said: "Obviously, I’m a New Zealander.
"Both outfits will go through a process when they are interviewing for the jobs. Let’s see what happens.
"I have thought about what I want to do in the short term and I have committed to that – the Crusaders.
"When that’s done, then we’ll look at the next step. Having said that, I’ll never rule anything out.
"I enjoy what I do. If people want to give me an opportunity at a higher level then that’s great.
"But I won’t be spending any time thinking about that before the time. It’s dead time. It’s non-productive."