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Leicester Tigers club statement on head coach

Leicester Tigers have today announced the departure of head coach Matt O’Connor with immediate effect.

Assistant coach Geordan Murphy, an eight-time Premiership title winner and double European champion in 16 years as a player at Tigers, will take charge of team affairs on an interim basis.

O’Connor began his second spell at the club in the closing rounds of the 2016/17 season and guided Tigers into the Premiership semi-finals at the end of that campaign before a fifth-place finish the following year.

Leicester Tigers club chairman Peter Tom CBE said: “Matt was appointed head coach in April 2017 on the basis of his previous Premiership experience and his knowledge of the club. But we believe the time is right to make this change in the best interests of the Tigers moving forward.

“We would like to thank Matt for his hard work and commitment to the club in two spells at Welford Road, and we wish him and his family well for the future.”

Former Tigers captain Murphy will assume control of team affairs immediately alongside coaches Mark Bakewell, Boris Stankovich and Brett Deacon.

Chairman Peter Tom added: “As a club, Leicester Tigers will always aspire to challenge for major honours in the incredibly competitive arena of professional elite club rugby and everyone at the club will fully support Geordan and the management group in driving the team forward.

“Geordan knows the expectations and ambitions of the Tigers as well as anyone after more than 20 years here as player and coach, and we wish him and the team the very best for the challenges ahead.”