'Just an opinion' – Warren Gatland laughs off 'greatest ever coach' accolade

Source: 1News

Warren Gatland isn't taking his latest accolade too seriously, having been voted by Rugby World magazine as the best coach of all time.

In a bracket of some of the best 32 coaches to grace rugby, current Chiefs boss Gatland emerged as the fans' choice as the greatest, his time with Wales and the British and Irish Lions earning him plaudits across the globe.

The 56-year-old beat former Scotland coach Ian McGeechan, Sir Graham Henry and current World Cup holder Rassie Erasmus to take the title.

However, despite the nod of being named the best there's ever been, Gatland isn't getting too carried away by the consensus of Rugby World's readers.

"It's just an opinion," Gatland joked.

"They kind of did it like a tennis tournament, with two sides of the draw, and you went up against one of the coaches, and someone voted and you went to the next round and you went to the next round.

"I made the joke that if it was to be done this week and was against different coaches, I probably wouldn't make the quarter-finals.

"It's a nice accolade, without getting carried away."

Gatland did also say that he was keeping the honour in perspective.

"With coaching, with selection, with players, everything comes down to a matter of opinion.

"Everyone has their own opinion, and that's great. That's the beauty of sport.

"If we were all exactly the same, it'd be boring. [It's] a nice accolade, a nice gesture, but I'm not getting carried away with that.

"A lot of people out there would have different opinions, and I'm perfectly comfortable with that, and that's perfectly OK with me."

Gatland's next assignment will be coaching the Chiefs in Super Rugby Aotearoa, beginning against the Highlanders on Saturday night in Dunedin.