Rugby Union: Cooke's exit is blow for Bedford
Tuesday 08 December 1998
When the 57-year-old Cumbrian resigned from a successful England side in February 1994 it took the rugby world by surprise. He had managed the 1993 Lions and turned England's fortunes around. His Test record ended with 35 wins, one draw and 13 defeats from 49 games.
However, yesterday's decision was less of a surprise and a possibility all season once the club, which has won only two matches this season and is owned by Frank Warren, ran into financial problems following the boxing promoter's complex legal wrangle with Don King.
In September, the coach, Paul Turner, resigned, and rugby director Cooke - just two years into the job - admitted: "I have had to dust down an old tracksuit and get on the training pitch."
He stressed the club's limited cash base by saying: "And we won't be appointing a new coach or buying new players. There is no scope for that."
It is likely that the former Springbok Rudi Straeuli, who has undertaken more coaching after curtailing his playing role in recent weeks, will assume fuller responsibility.
The players and staff have received salaries late and, although the Warren-King issue is expected to come before the courts next month, it is too late for Cooke, and his departure implies more money problems for the staff.
Cooke, who first appointed Will Carling as England captain in 1988 and shared two Grand Slams with him in 1991 and 1992, was upset with the latest Bedford developments. "I am bitterly disappointed at the circumstances that have produced this outcome," he said.
"The players and other staff have worked hard over the past two years to help Bedford rise from the depths of League Two to achieve Premiership status, and I am very sad that my association with the club should end in this way."
Warren acknowledged the inevitability of Cooke's exit, stating: "I am disappointed but appreciate Geoff's position."
An announcement about a chief executive will be made later this week, Warren said.
Actress sees off speculation about her appearance in an amazing way
Review: Despite an uphill climb to see Jake Bugg in action, his performance is notably flat
Powerful images of strays taken moments before being put down
Review: Witty banalities aside, the comedian has an authentic voice
The Washington Post editor helped Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein bring down President Nixon
Latest in Sport
Indian footballer Peter Biaksangzuala dies from spine injury after doing somersault celebration
Liverpool vs Real Madrid: Isco will provide just as great a threat at Anfield as the injured Gareth Bale would have
Angel Di Maria injury: Manchester United sweat over fitness of record signing as he is in danger of missing Chelsea clash
Video: Boxer Vido Loncar brutally assaults referee following defeat
Chelsea vs Maribor player ratings: Cesc Fabregas? Eden Hazard? Didier Drogba? Who was the star of the show at Stamford Bridge?
- 1 Salisbury ranked seventh-best city in the world to visit in Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2015
- 2 Disney announces new female-led film Moana
- 3 Banksy not arrested: Internet duped by fake report claiming artist's identity revealed
- 5 Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
London bus driver 'kicks gay couple off for kissing'
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Jose Manuel Barroso warns David Cameron against making 'historic mistake' over immigration reforms
£21000 - £35000 per annum: Randstad Education Cambridge: Science teacher requi...
£36000 - £60000 per annum: Randstad Education Southampton: Our client are a we...
£22000 - £32000 per annum + TLR: Randstad Education Southampton: Our client is...
£300 - £350 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: The role could involve w...