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Page last updated at 12:30 GMT, Thursday, 17 February 2011

Leeds Carnegie part company with Andy Key

Andy Key
Key signed a contract extension with Leeds at the start of the season

Leeds Carnegie have parted company with director of rugby Andy Key with immediate effect.

A club statement says his departure is part of a restructuring of the management team.

Head coach Neil Back will now be solely in charge and Leeds will not appoint a new director of rugby.

Chief executive Gary Hetherington said: "This was a tough decision, however we felt it was important we took it as part of our overall vision."

Key moved from Leicester Tigers to Leeds, along with Back, in 2008, and immediately guided the club to promotion to the Premiership in their first season in charge.

Last season, Leeds retained their Premiership status and Key was named QBE director of rugby of the season.

However, the West Yorkshire club are currently bottom of the Premiership after just one league win this season.

Hetherington added: "Neil Back will now be in sole charge of all team matters and I, as chief executive, will take up some of the other areas that Andy was responsible for. We will not be looking to appoint a new director of rugby.

It has been a difficult season for Leeds Carnegie, however I feel that we have made big strides in recent weeks

Andy Key

"We would like to thank Andy for his outstanding contribution to the club in his time here and he leaves with our best wishes.

Key had previously been a member of the Leicester first team coaching staff, as well as heading up the Tigers academy.

He had only signed a new contract with the Headingley club at the start of the season.

Key said: "First of all, I would like to say that I am proud of the achievements we have made here at Leeds Carnegie during my time at the club.

"Whilst I am disappointed not to be seeing the vision through to its conclusion, having met with the management, I understand the direction they want to take the club in.

"We have worked exceptionally hard since 2008 to take the club into a positive and professional position and I wish the team and the club all the very best for the future.

"It has been a difficult season for Leeds Carnegie, however I feel that we have made big strides in recent weeks and I have every confidence that the team will continue that good work.

"I would like to thank all those who have supported me in my time at Leeds Carnegie and the many friends we have made here in Yorkshire."

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see also
Leeds 9-15 Leicester
13 Feb 11 |  English
Six wins could save Leeds - Key
23 Dec 10 |  Leeds
Leeds boss dismisses sacking talk
29 Nov 10 |  Leeds
Back and Key sign new Leeds deals
09 Sep 10 |  Leeds
Leeds unveil Tigers' Key and Back
30 Jun 08 |  Leicester

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