Back's job safe - Hetherington
November 28, 2010
Leeds director of rugby Andy Key talks to ESPN%]
Leeds chief executive Gary Hetherington rubbished reports that head coach Neil Back was facing the sack after their 51-18 defeat to Harlequins.
Hetherington insisted that the board are backing their management, despite the fact that they have nine defeats from nine to show from a very difficult season.
He said: "You can do without that type of reporting. It was claimed to come from 'a source close to the club', but there are no sources close to the club. There's just the club and we are all in this together.
"There will be no knee-jerk reactions from us. We are committed to doing what we did last season, which was a tremendous fightback in the second half of the season to achieve safety. We are seven points adrift, but there is a lot of rugby to be played yet. I'm the chief executive and I am saying that we are working together to improve and turn this situation around."
Leeds rugby director Andy Key said: "We are massively disappointed because we have come here, scored two tries yet leave empty-handed. Why? Because of our own basic errors.
"To get off to a good start only to ship an intercept try makes life tough immediately, and then we fell so far behind due to errors that you know the way back is a steep climb. The history of this season so far is littered with our basic errors proving so costly. It just means our efforts have to be stepped up even further.
"It's great to hear Gary say what he said, because when you read stuff like that about 'Backy' it just does not help anyone. We have always felt that the board are behind us, which is a great help when you are struggling. There have been some positives from every game. It is just a case of us getting that breakthrough win and the confidence levels rocket upwards."
Tom Guest strides clear to score for Quins at the Stoop © Getty Images
Harlequins captain Chris Robshaw admitted it was about time they finished a greater percentage of their chances.
He said: "We've produced some good performances this season without the quality of finishing to match, so scoring seven tries at home feels very good.
"We have a lot of belief as a squad that we are a top-six side. We want to play an expansive and exciting brand of rugby, but to achieve that you also need to get your basics right. Finishing is one of them and, as we saw in defeat at Leicester last weekend, you pay a hefty price in such games if you don't score when tries are there to be scored."
Quins rugby director Conor O'Shea said: "I am delighted with this result because we have been creating chances but not taking them. We showed real ambition out there, and I think that is how rugby should be played. Now we go to Saracens next weekend and need to build on this performance."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
As Ray McLoughlin prepares to celebrate his 75th birthday, Huw Richards pays tribute to the man and the selectors who had the wisdom to bring him into the Ireland fold
John Taylor argues the world's best XVs players must be given a chance to play in the Olympics to increase the appeal of the game
The All Blacks' form is not a peaking issue, but Hansen must threaten to wield his axe, to demand improvement, Craig Dowd writes
"It has been the World Cup that smashed down the gender barriers of the sport." Tom Hamilton looks back at a remarkable tournament