No 'trigger' for Steve Meehan departure insist Bath
Wednesday 30 March 2011
Bath chief executive Nick Blofeld today denied that his club's record home defeat by Leicester at the weekend had anything to do with the announcement that head coach Steve Meehan would leave his post at the end of the season.
The Australian, who moved to the Recreation Ground in July 2006 after four years at Stade Francais, will depart by mutual agreement.
Meehan took Bath to three consecutive Premiership semi-finals and won the European Challenge Cup in 2008.
Bath are currently seventh in the Aviva Premiership table and pushing for a place in the play-offs this season, but Meehan's position has been the subject of speculation since Sir Ian McGeechan was installed as director of rugby at the beginning of the season.
The west country side were beaten 37-6 in a Premiership match at the weekend but Blofeld is adamant that loss had not led to Meehan's exit.
"There has been no trigger," he said.
"There have been conversations, as we well know. There was a change of roles back in November and there have been ongoing conversations to try and make things work better. But ultimately we agreed that it wasn't working quite the way either side wanted.
"I don't believe in letting things fester and rumour gathered so we were keen on making a clean announcement and moving things forward, so that we could concentrate on the rugby again.
"There is always a risk when you are changing a structure and building a new organisation, on and off the pitch. There have been significant changes over the last year or so.
"Nothing changes (in the meantime). Steve still leads training. We just have clarity that he won't be here next season."
Blofeld hailed Meehan's achievements in his time at the Rec, adding: "Steve has made us much more expansive and we are delighted with that.
"We want to be an expansive team but we probably need some more flexible approaches, a bit more focus on the forwards at times but that's a frank conversation that happens between coaches on a week-by-week basis."
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