Dean Richards to step down as Newcastle Falcons director of rugby

Dean Richards had been with Newcastle Falcons since 2012
Dean Richards had been with Newcastle Falcons since 2012

Newcastle Falcons have confirmed that Dean Richards will step down from his director of rugby role at end of the ongoing season.

Richards had a stellar playing career having featured over 300 times for Leicester apart from another 54 Tests for England and British and Irish Lions combined. Following his retirement, he took over the coaching with Leicester Tigers between 1998 and 2004 during which the club went on to win four Premierships and two Heineken Cups.

He also had stints with Grenoble and Harlequins during which he faced a suspension for a Bloodgate scandal but returned in 2012 with Newcastle Falcons helping them to a fourth place finish in the 2017/18 season and in the process secured a Champions Cup qualification.

The 58-year-old will continue to work with the club on a consultancy role.

Richards will now be succeeded by head coach Dave Walder with Mark Laycock, Micky Ward and Scott MacLeod continuing to be part of the backroom staff. They will be joined by former England back-row Mark Wilson.

Defence coach Nick Easter and kicking skills coach Toby Flood will both leave their positions at the end of the ongoing campaign.