Early exit for Drotske

Date published: May 20 2015

Cheetahs head coach Naka Drotske has been granted an early release from his contract by the Bloemfontein-based franchise.

Drotske announced earlier this month that he would step down from his role at the end of the Cheetahs' current Super Rugby campaign and former Treviso coach Franco Smith was appointed as his successor.

However, the Cheetahs revealed via press statement on their official website that Drotske has opted to take an earlier release from his contract after the Cheetahs allowed forwards coach Os du Randt to take up a new coaching position overseas.

This means that Drotske's final match in charge of the Cheetahs will be against the Stormers in Cape Town on May 30.

Smith will be in charge for the Cheetahs' last two matches of the season against the Waratahs and Bulls while backline coach Hawies Fourie will stay on in his role unless he reaches another agreement with Smith.

If the latter occurs then Fourie will link up with Griquas as head coach ahead of the Currie Cup.

“Os du Randt has accepted a very exciting opportunity to coach abroad and to be an ambassador for the Cheetahs," read the press statement.

"He will leave the Cheetahs during the first week of June. A full media conference is scheduled for May 23 in the Free State Stadium where details of his departure will be discussed.

“Drotske insisted that he wants to step down when Os leaves, instead of continuing with the tournament without his complete coaching team.

"During the 2014 Super Rugby competition it was decided that Griquas players and Hawies Fourie could be released early to help the Griquas qualify for the 2014 Currie Cup.

"The lack of depth led to below standard results which Drotske felt he had to take blame for. The Cheetahs have full understanding for his position and agreed to his request.”