Grayson departs from Northampton
November 20, 2012
Paul Grayson will leave Northampton © PA Photos
Northampton Saints have announced that assistant coach Paul Grayson has left the club.
Grayson has been at Franklin's Gardens in both a player and coach capacity for 19 years and will leave the club by 'mutual consent'. While turning out for the Saints Grayson, who was part of England's 2003 World Cup-winning squad, had become the club's all-time leading points scorer with 2,784 from 259 matches. He then progressed into the head coach role and led them to the 2007 Heineken Cup semi-final but the Saints were relegated to the second-tier of English rugby the same year.
Jim Mallinder assumed the helm at the Saints and Grayson worked alongside him and Dorian West to lead the side to the 2009 Amlin Challenge Cup and the 2010 Anglo-Welsh Cup. But Grayson will now leave Franklin's Gardens to take on new challenges.
"I have put heart and soul into the club over many years, as have my wife and children," Grayson said. "I enjoyed myself as a player here, and over the past few years it has been satisfying to have played a part in helping the Saints get back to the top of the club game. I am proud to have been a part of the history of one of the great clubs.
"I'd like to thank the Barwell family for everything they have done for me and my family over the years, as well as the Saints fans for all their support. After 19 years at Franklin's Gardens I need to prioritise my wife and children and make some sacrifices for them. As such I am happy to step away from my role with the club in good health and on the right path, and look forward to exploring the many opportunities that are out there in the world of rugby.
"I look forward to watching the Saints progress and wish Jim, Dorian, the players and staff every success."
Director of rugby Mallinder thanked Grayson for his dedication to the club. "Grase has been a big part of the Saints for many years and has played an important role in our development," he said. "The records he set as a player will take something special to break, and as a coach he has helped bring on some very talented individuals.
"We will use this as an opportunity to freshen things up and move things forward. On behalf of the players and coaches I wish Grase and his family all the best for the future."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Proposals to remove promotion and relegation from the Aviva Premiership would be for the good of the game overall, argues John Taylor
Ireland have the world sitting up and taking notice - and rugby's structure in Europe will aid their Rugby World Cup bid, writes John Mitchell
Where does Italy's win over Scotland rank among their successes in the Six Nations? Scrum Sevens investigates
The tone was set early on in Dublin as a more clinical Ireland made England pay. All is not lost, however, argues Phil Vickery