Rugby director Tony Hanks departs from Wasps

Wasps have announced rugby director Tony Hanks' departure from the Aviva Premiership club "by mutual agreement."

Head coach Shaun Edwards will take charge of the Wasps squad for Saturday's league clash against champions Leicester at Welford Road.



Wasps chief executive Chris Thomas says the search for New Zealander Hanks' replacement will begin immediately.

Hanks was appointed rugby director in May 2009, succeeding Sir Ian McGeechan at Adams Park.

The former Waikato coach had previously headed up Wasps' back-room team when McGeechan was allowed time to prepare for leading the 2009 British and Irish Lions in South Africa.



Wasps are currently sixth in the Premiership, two points adrift of the title play-off places, although they made a Heineken Cup pool stage exit last month despite beating holders Toulouse in their final game.



That Toulouse triumph is their only victory from the last six matches in all competitions.



Thomas said: "Results have not gone as we would have liked this season, and we have been disappointed with recent performances.



"Tony has been equally disappointed with how things are going on the pitch, as he has always been wholeheartedly committed to the club with a strong desire to see it succeed.



"Both parties believe that the time is right for change to give the squad a fresh start, and the club is now looking forward."



Hanks, who also worked with Wasps under McGeechan's predecessor Warren Gatland, added: "I am naturally disappointed to be leaving the club, and this has been a really tough decision to come to.



"In my time here over many years I have developed a very strong bond with the players and staff, and I want to thank them for their hard work and commitment.



"I have huge respect for London Wasps and I wish everyone the best. I am confident there is a special group of players coming through and that the club will be successful in the future."

Thomas believes Hanks' successor will inherit a squad high on ambition and set to be strengthened by new arrivals.

He said: "Our focus now is on recruiting someone who can take the club forward and put us in the best position to challenge for honours.



"Tony's successor will inherit an ambitious squad that we will strengthen in the coming months.



"With eight more Premiership games to go, our aim as a minimum is to secure our place in next year's Heineken Cup and continue to fight for a place in the play-offs.



"This club has a proud history of success, and our ambition is as strong as ever."



Edwards, despite being put in charge for this weekend's game, is also Wales defence coach, which will limit his availability for next week's home Premiership clash against Saracens, given that Wales have an RBS 6 Nations appointment with Italy in Rome the same weekend.





Life and Style
food + drink
Life and Style
love + sex A new study has revealed the average size - but does that leave men outside the 'normal' range being thought of as 'abnormal'?
Life and Style
Tikka Masala has been overtaken by Jalfrezi as the nation's most popular curry
food + drink
News
UK Border Control
i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn