Sale Sharks director of rugby Steve Diamond has parted company with the club.
The news was broken on the Gallagher Premiership club’s website at 12pm today (Tuesday).
The statement is copied below…
Sale Sharks Rugby Club can today announce that Steve Diamond has left the club with immediate effect due to personal reasons.
The club would like to thank Steve for his loyal service and commitment over the years. He leaves Sale Sharks in a strong position having improved the club in many ways and we wish him every success for the future.
Paul Deacon will assume responsibility of the first team as Head Coach while we take stock and plan for the future.
Commenting on the announcement, Steve said:
“After 10 proud years with Sale Sharks I have taken the decision to step away from the business.
I feel that this is the perfect moment to hand over to someone else, given the club is now stable and in a great position to compete at the highest level.
We have acquired a world class training facility, built an academy that is the envy of many premiership clubs and constructed a squad that can win tournaments and trophies at domestic and European level.
I know Simon and Ged will continue with the progress we have made together, and I now look forward to taking some time out and planning my next challenge.”
Sale have won two of their three games at the start of the 2020/21 Gallagher Premiership season to sit fourth in the table heading into the fortnight of European action. They face Toulon away this Saturday, followed by the visit of Edinburgh Rugby on Saturday, December 19.
As recently as last week Diamond was busy adding a new recruit to his squad as second-rower Jean-Pierre du Preez became the tenth South African to join the current playing group.
Diamond secured Sale their first piece of silverware since 2006 when they lifted the Premiership Rugby Cup last season with a 27-19 win over Harlequins.
Their pursuit of a top-four finish last term was derailed at the final hurdle as a Covid-19 outbreak within the camp saw multiple players test positive, resulting in their final round clash with Worcester Warriors being forefeited. As a result, Worcester were awarded the win and Bath qualified for the semi-finals at their expense.
More to follow…