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Plumtree makes early exit from Sharks
June 25, 2013
Sharks head coach John Plumtree during the Durban sides' press conference, Kings Park, Durban, South Africa, June 14, 2011
John Plumtree had a long association with the Durban-based Sharks © Getty Images
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New Zealander John Plumtree has finished as coach of the Sharks by mutual agreement, six weeks before his tenure at the South African Super Rugby team was due to end.

Plumtree's exit after 10 years at the Sharks was announced two weeks ago but he was expected to see out the current season.

However, a statement from the Durban-based franchise on Tuesday said the parties had amicably chosen to end their association with immediate effect.

Sharks assistant coaches Grant Bashford and Hugh-Reece Edwards will take over coaching duties until the end of the Super Rugby season, with Brendan Venter set to join as director of rugby ahead of the Currie Cup.

The 10th-placed Sharks, who still have a slim chance of reaching the play-offs with three games remaining, face the Blues in Durban on Saturday.

Plumtree, 47, won two domestic Currie Cup as coach of the Sharks to add to his two titles as a player.

Sharks chairman Stephen Saad described Plumtree as a loyal, faithful servant at the franchise during a long association.

"We are also grateful for the impeccable manner in which he has conducted himself during challenging times in the last while," Saad said.

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