Johannesburg: Defence specialist Jacques Nienaber was promoted to head coach of the world champions South Africa on Friday to replace Rassie Erasmus, who returned to the more senior role of director of rugby after winning the World Cup in November.

Erasmus had already indicated before the World Cup in Japan that he would go back to his regular job after the tournament. He will still oversee the management of the Springboks.

“Jacques will be responsible for the Test match preparation and day-to-day team operations but, as the director of rugby, I will be with the team for the majority of the time and in the coaches’ box with Jacques at matches,” Erasmus said.

“I’ll still be responsible for the strategy and results.”