Matthew Elliott keen to keep Iro as assistant

DUNCAN JOHNSTONE
Last updated 05:00 13/10/2012
Tony Iro
Getty Images
UNDECIDED: Tony Iro has still not decided on his future with the Warriors.

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Tony Iro looks certain to be asked to continue as assistant coach of the Warriors.

Long-term backup Iro missed out on being elevated to the top job, with Australian Matt Elliott handed the reins on a two-year contract.

Iro has the support of his players - as they have made clear in recent days - with several believing he could handle the head coaching role.

It seems Iro also has the support of Elliott, who has yet to declare the makeup of his management team but voiced his respect for Iro.

“If he decides to be assistant, that would be my strong will and intent to keep him there,” Elliott said.

Elliott believed one of his biggest assets during his long tenure in the game was his ability to develop and promote his assistants. “Five or six of them - and some players as well - have gone on to be head coaches.”

Elijah Taylor came out before Elliott's appointment was confirmed, strongly stating his preference for Iro to get the job and suggesting that reflected the feeling of many of the players.

After Elliott was announced, Kevin Locke took down one tweet and replaced it with: “I said nothn negative about the new coach just gutted for tony that's all I'm lukn 4wrd to nxt didnt matter who the coach was.”

Elliott's spin on that attitude towards Iro from the squad was that he saw it as “a positive statement”, displaying a “high level of trust and loyalty to staff”.

“If they have that level of faith and belief in Tony, I'm looking forward to working with Tony.”

Iro has spent six years at the club, initially with the successful under-20s side and the past three as assistant to Ivan Cleary and Brian McClennan.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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