Head coach Gary Stronach to leave Plymouth Raiders
It's time for me to move on - Stronach
Plymouth Raiders head coach Gary Stronach has announced he will leave the club at the end of the season.
Stronach, who first came to the Raiders 24 years ago, has decided to turn down a new coaching contract.
He told BBC Spotlight: "I think it's time for me to move on, broaden the horizon and see what's out there.
"It's been in my mind for a number of years," added Stronach. "I knew I wasn't going to be here forever, and now's a good time to look around."
Stronach played 356 games for the Raiders after moving down from his native North East in 1985.
On his retirement from playing in 1999, Stronach quickly joined the coaching staff, and only four years later he was in charge as the Raiders made the leap from English Basketball's Division One into the professional British Basketball League.
Stronach's proudest moment came in 2007 when he led the side to the BBL Trophy, beating Newcastle Eagles in the final.
The current season has not brought such highs for the Raiders, who are 10th in the league standings and unable to qualify for the play-offs.
I had made up my mind not just in the last month, this has been an ongoing thing that I have battled with and the time is right now
Outgoing Plymouth Raiders coach Gary Stronach
But Stronach is adamant that the difficulties faced by the club on the court this year have had no bearing on his decision to leave.
He said: "I could be being interviewed now and we're second in the league and chasing the title, and I would still be saying the same thing.
"I had made up my mind not just in the last month, this has been an ongoing thing that I have battled with and the time is right now."
Stronach's last game in charge of the Raiders will be at home to Worthing on Sunday, with an away trip to Worcester before that on Saturday.
And the popular 46-year-old, who won the BBC South West Lifetime Achievement Sports Award in 2007, had a heartfelt message as he prepares for a new direction.
"I want to thank everybody for an unbelievable 24 years, I've had a great time," he added.
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