Smith staying with the Chiefs despite continued attention

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James Mortimer     12 Aug 2012     Getty Images

When the Waratahs announced that Michael Foley had signed a three-year contract with the Western Force, one of the first names mentioned as a replacement was Smith.

The 55-year-old, who also spurned an offer from the Rugby Football Union earlier this year to join England, has said that he feels the Chiefs are on the verge of something special - while he has family in the Waikato area.

With NSW having a horror season, some sections of the Australian media suggested that the Waratahs would break the bank to get a high profile coach, but Smith confirmed to the Sydney Morning Herald he was staying in New Zealand.

Smith was on a two-year contract with the Investec Super Rugby winning Chiefs, and suggested that this would be longer.

"I've now given a verbal agreement to the New Zealand Rugby Union that I'll be staying," Smith said.

"...I'm not on the market.'

Smith, along with Dave Rennie, Tom Coventry and a squad of "hard working buggers", won the Super Rugby title - with the former All Blacks assistant becoming the first man to win crowns with different frachises as a coach.

While he admitted the Waratahs had contacted him, he said it was a brief conversation.

"I had an approach from my agent, who said (the Waratahs) had contacted him," Smith said.

"But he knew I'd made a verbal agreement to New Zealand, so there was no further discussion.'