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Kiwi rowing coach Dick Tonks joining Canada for Tokyo Olympics campaign

Renowned Kiwi rowing coach Richard "Dick" Tonks has announced his next move in the sport after he agreed to join Canada as the head coach of the senior men.

Legendary coach Dick Tonks speaks about the schism that has opened up with Rowing New Zealand. Source: 1 NEWS

Rowing Canada confirmed the acquisition of Tonks, who guided Kiwi crews to more than 30 Olympic and World Championship medals in his tenure with Rowing NZ, to lead their high performance team through to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

"I am looking forward to working with the Canadian rowers," Tonks said in a statement.

"Canada has a strong legacy in rowing and I look forward to helping them write their next chapter."

Tonks has won the Halberg Awards' coach of they year five times - 1999, 2004, 2005, 2009 and 2012 - which is more than any other in the award's 27-year history. He also has three World Rowing coach of the year awards under his belt from 2005, 2010 and 2012.

The 66-year-old departed Rowing NZ in 2015 after falling out with administration over work he was doing with a crew in China.

He stayed on as coach for single sculler Mahe Drysdale and the women's double sculls of Eve MacFarlane and Zoe Stevenson at their request for the Rio Olympics but has since been away from the rowing scene.

"In bringing Dick Tonks to Canada we create an opportunity for our own coaches to learn and grow alongside one of the most successful coaches of all time," Rowing Canada chief executive Terry Dillon said.

Tonks will begin his new role at the end of November.