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Ex-Ireland rugby coach Joe Schmidt returns to NZ, looks ahead to becoming grandparent

Former Irish rugby coach and Kiwi-born Joe Schmidt has left many Irish viewers jealous as he described life in Covid-free New Zealand.

Ireland coach Joe Schmidt. Source: Getty

The Kiwi appeared on an Irish chat show yesterday where he opened up his family’s decision to return to their homeland as his youngest son Luke, who has epilepsy, was struggling with coronavirus restrictions in Ireland, Irish paper The Independant reported.

"When schools went back it was going to be very tough for him and being out of school for so long was tough for him so we just felt he was probably a bit more vulnerable than most youngesters with all that he has had to put up with with the surgeries," the 55-year-old said.

"It’s great for him to be back and the freedom he has gives him the opportunity to mix with other people."

Schmidt also announced some exciting news and told host Ryan Turbidy he is going to become a grandfather as his daughter is expecting.

"It’s a bit surreal being a grandparent. It’s going to be a young lad so I’m looking forward to that as well".

Schmidt won three Six Nations Championships during his time at the helm, including a Grand Slam success in 2018. He was also in charge for historic wins over the All Blacks in 2016 and 2018.