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Former All Black Aaron Mauger ditched as Leicester coach

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 20/03/2017 By Andrew Baldock
Leicester Tigers coach Aaron Mauger is a fan of the Champions Cup © Provided by Press Association Aaron Mauger

Former All Black Aaron Mauger will coach English Premiership club Leicester for one more game before an unceremonious exit.

Leicester announced the return of Australian Matt O'Connor as their head coach over the closing weeks of the season, starting next week.

It means Mauger remains in charge of the fifth-placed club until this Saturday's match against Northampton.

Appointed Leicester head coach in 2015, former Crusaders and All Blacks midfield back Mauger took control of the club's coaching team on an interim basis after Richard Cockerill departed as rugby director earlier in the season.

Mauger, 36, admitted in an interview he had "fundamental differences" with the club following Cockerill's departure.

Since then Leicester have suffered elimination in the pool stages of the European Champions Cup and struggled for consistency in the Premiership.

Leicester chairman Peter Tom offered praise to Mauger for his contribution.

"We thank Aaron for his commitment to the club over the last two seasons as head coach, and especially in his time in interim charge of team affairs in recent months," Tom said.

"Matt's strengths are in his work with players on the training pitch, and we are making changes to our organisational structure to enable him to focus solely on the success of the team."

O'Connor, 46, worked at Leicester between 2008 and 2013, initially as backs coach and then head coach. During that period, the Tigers won three Premiership titles.

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