Rugby League: Dorahy sacked by Wigan for 'gross misconduct': Club's brief statement fails to clarify reasons for dismissing double-winning coach after less than one season in charge
Dave Hadfield was a schoolboy convert to rugby league, the game which, one way or another, has dominated his life ever since. After working for newspapers in Shropshire and Blackpool (where he covered the fortunes of Blackpool Borough) he travelled the world, working mainly in Hong Kong and Sydney. He became The Independent's rugby league man in 1990 and has written five books on the game and broadcast extensively for Sky and the BBC. Dave played his last game at the age of 53 and would have set up a try if anyone could have been bothered supporting his break. When not writing about the sport, he now limits himself to a bit of tick and pass with his local club, the Bolton Mets. Family includes supporters - of varying degrees of dedication - of Salford, Wigan, Sheffield Eagles and St George Illawarra.
Thursday 05 May 1994
'I have no idea what they are talking about,' a stunned Dorahy said yesterday. 'They have refused to tell me what this gross misconduct amounts to.'
Some reports have suggested that Dorahy and his chairman, Jack Robinson, had a heated exchange on the way back from Wembley, but Dorahy denies any such incident.
He was aware and presumably annoyed that Robinson was adding to speculation by telling reporters that it was to be discussed at the end of the season, even as Wigan were celebrating their victory.
Dorahy will be little the wiser over his alleged offence after a brief statement last night in which Robinson referred to 'unhappy differences' between the coach and the club.
Although Dorahy described the timing and manner of his sacking as 'diabolical', he has long been aware of clouds on the horizon.
Despite his generally impressive results, rumours of his unpopularity among the players and other sections of the club have burgeoned during the season.
The appointment of the club captain, Dean Bell, in an ill-defined coaching assistant's role last month looked like a move designed to marginalise Dorahy.
The portents grew worse last week when Robinson began to refer to a one-year contract with an option for an extra two, rather than the three-year deal Dorahy was described as having signed when he arrived.
Dorahy said that he was constrained from going into detail by legal proceedings he will take after failing to reach a pay-off agreement. 'But you will be amazed when the truth comes out just what I have had to put up with,' he added.
Dorahy, with a distinguished playing career but little coaching experience behind him, was a surprise choice as successor to John Monie at Wigan. He was player-coach at Halifax for one season before that arrangement ended in acrimony and had been an assistant coach at the Newcastle Knights in his native Australia.
It is clear that he failed to get the senior players at Wigan behind him, with the result that even when they performed to their best, as in a cup semi-final win over Castleford, it was widely regarded as their work rather than his.
Even at moments of triumph, Dorahy has sometimes looked an isolated figure and he has complained about being caught in the undertow of a battle for control of the club.
He was so disillusioned by the political in-fighting at one stage, in fact, that he planned to resign after Wembley - a plan he abandoned after winning the championship 10 days ago.
Wigan's players were keeping their own council yesterday, waiting for a meeting this morning to clarify matters.
Graeme West, the reserve team coach, will take charge of the side for the rest of the season. Bell, probably the most influential figure at the club, said that he was still committed to joining the Auckland Warriors at the end of the season and that he did not want to be a caretaker coach.
The search for a successor will be concentrated among coaches with a proven track record in Australia's Winfield Cup. Brian Smith, Warren Ryan, Phil Gould and Wayne Bennett all have the credentials, but Tim Sheens of the Canberra Raiders could be the best bet.
The former Wigan captain, Ellery Hanley, has also been mentioned in dispatches, but this is no job for a novice, however illustrious his playing career.
Almost unnoticed alongside events at Wigan yesterday, Tony Gordon has failed to agree terms with London Crusaders' new owners, the Brisbane Broncos, and will leave his job as coach at the end of this season.
Latest in Sport
Pornhub: Cheeky Liverpool fan uploads Philippe Coutinho wonder-goal video to adult website
Liverpool injury news: Brendan Rodgers could be without up to seven players for Burnley game... as Jordon Ibe posts picture of knee brace
Arsenal shareholders Stan Kroenke, Alisher Usmanov and Farhad Moshiri appear on Forbes' rich list - with a combined net worth of £14.9bn
Watch the moment a basketball player reassures a small boy after a mass brawl erupted on court
Jon Stewart brings The Daily Show to WWE Raw as Seth Rollins pays the price for feud with TV presenter
- 1 Home Office says Nigerian asylum-seeker can’t be a lesbian as she’s got children
- 2 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 3 Drugs Live cannabis trial: Hash is less harmful than any other drug, expert claims
- 4 Turkish Airlines flight TK 726 crash-lands on Nepal runway amid dense fog
- 5 Apple and Google users being spied on for a decade because of 'Freak' security flaw
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
Boris Nemtsov shot dead: Outspoken Putin critic who had expressed fears for his life is killed near the Kremlin
£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This firm are focussed on assis...
£7 per hour: Recruitment Genius: A vacancy has arisen for a General Processor ...
£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A great opportunity has arisen ...
£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Full time and Part time positio...