Gordon Tietjens, Sir
|Sevens legend Gordon Tietjens has led New Zealand’s dominating run in the world of rugby sevens. He is arguably New Zealand's most successful sporting coach of the past 25 years. He has set the standard in Sevens coaching since taking over as national coach in 1994. As at the end of 2014 he had coached the NZ Sevens team to 12 world titles from the 15 contested. In addition to 12 world titles his sides have won four Commonwealth Games gold medals under his stewardship.
In May 2015 New Zealand qualified for the 2016 Rio Olympics. New Zealand did not have success in Rio, and in September 2016, Titch announced his retirment from the coaching role.
His story is unique in the annals of New Zealand sporting achievement. He has an uncanny eye for spotting talent and every year he introduces new stars of the future to New Zealand rugby. Stars like Jonah Lomu, Christian Cullen and Joe Rokocoko. But as quickly as he launches them on to the world stage, they are snapped up by other coaches for Super 14 and All Blacks duty. Tietjens talks about the great success his teams have enjoyed as well as the frustrations he has faced at losing players for important tournaments. As well, he will talk about his legendary training methods and hard-nosed approach to winning.
Throughout the 1990s and 2000s. In 1999 his efforts were recognised by being awarded the NZ Order of Merit in the New Year’s Honours List. In 2007 Gordon was awarded a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to rugby. In 2012 Gordon received a knighthood. Gordon was named the New Zealand Rugby Union Coach of the Year for 2010, recognised for guiding his team to a fourth consecutive Commonwealth Games gold medal.
In May 2012 Gordon became the 49th inductee into the International Rugby Board's Hall of Fame. The commemorative cap and gold pin were presented at an awards ceremony at Twickenham, shortly after New Zealand clinched their 10th World Series title from 13 attempts.
Gordon has been the New Zealand sevens coach since 1994, guiding the team through a string of wins in tournaments from South America to Dubai.In 2013 Gordon's tema were once again World Champions this time in Russia.
Gordon represented New Zealand in rugby sevens in 1983 and played 86 games for Bay of Plenty between 1981 and 1989.
In May 2006 Gordon released his book "Sevens Mastery". His second book "Titch-Sevens is my game" was a best seller.