Jamie Joseph in talks over new Highlanders deal
The New Zealand Rugby Union is in negotiations with Jamie Joseph about a contract extension and Highlanders officials hope to confirm in coming weeks that he will remain their coach for a further two years.
Highlanders boss Roger Clark said yesterday they hadn't put a time frame on getting the Highlanders coaching position sorted for 2015 but admitted he would like it resolved "sooner rather than later".
Clark reiterated his and the Highlanders board's preference is that Joseph is locked in for a further two years.
"We've asked [the NZRU] to try and sign him for the next two years," Clark said.
"Obviously we had a blip in the radar last year for all sorts of different reasons but ... the results Jamie has got over the first two years of his contract, and this year, are exceptional really. We'd like to continue that and see it evolve.
"Obviously, the reason we selected Jamie in 2010 hasn't changed except he's got more experience and is a better coach for it."
It is understood the finer details of his employment contract are being worked through with the NZRU.
If Joseph were to sign on for a further two years, as expected, it would take his time at the helm of the Highlanders to six campaigns, the most in the history of the franchise.
His 57 games in charge is already the most with the franchise, ahead of Greg Cooper who was at the helm for 48 games between 2004 and 2007.
The former All Black loose forward's position as head coach looked on shaky ground heading into his final year of his current contract after a woeful 2013 season.
However, after nine games this season Joseph seems to have some bargaining power in the contract negotiations with the NZRU as he has turned his Highlanders side into a more than competitive unit.