IRB honour for South Africa’s Ian McIntosh

20 November 2013

Former Sharks and Springbok coach Ian McIntosh received the International Rugby Board’s Vernon Pugh Award for Distinguished Service at the IRB World Rugby Conference and Exhibition in Dublin, Ireland this week.

McIntosh, who has been a long-time Springbok selector, has been involved in rugby for 50 years.

He made his mark when he guided the Natal Sharks to their first ever Currie Cup title in 1990. That victory helped change the culture of a province that had traditionally been a B-division outfit into one of the most successful teams in South Africa, and a team recognised and supported worldwide.

Springbok coach

McIntosh also had a spell in charge of the Springboks before the 1995 Rugby World Cup and remains active as the coach of the South African Rugby Legends.

IRB chairman Bernard Lapasset said: “The IRB Awards recognise those who have inspired and encouraged our family to grow, to thrive and reach out.

“These recipients are each wonderful examples of how, through their selfless dedication to our sport and its character-building values, rugby can change lives, bring people together and provide tremendous camaraderie.”

McIntosh received the award from the Oregan Hoskins, the president of the South African Rugby Union.

‘Richly deserved’

“This is a very great honour and one that is richly deserved,” Hoskins said.

“Mac’s achievements as a coach are outstanding and speak for themselves. The Natal teams of the 1990s that he created were game-changing for professional rugby and raised the bar for rugby in this country.

“His influence has been significant on the many players that have passed through his hands and his passion for the game and his contribution to it remains undimmed. He really is a living legend. We salute you, Mac, and are proud of your achievement.”

The Vernon Pugh Award is named in honour of a former chairman of the IRB and was introduced in 2004. Former winners include former All Black coach Sir Brian Lochore, former All Black player and NZRU president the late Jock Hobbs, and Sir Nicholas Shehadie, former Wallaby international and ARU chairman and chairman of the first RWC committee in 1987.

SAinfo reporter and SA Rugby