DIRECTOR of rugby Peter Muller has been sacked by National League One club Doncaster, writes Steve Hossack. The South African, who joined the club in the summer of 2004 and led them to promotion last season, leaves with Doncaster third from bottom and only a point above the relegation places.
Chief executive John Lowe said: "The club are disappointed that the financial budget and support provided by Board members to Pieter Muller had not engendered the sustained level of success that had been anticipated."
Lowe added that the club, who are without a game this weekend, were unlikely to make an early appointment.
He said that the club would carry out a "careful search" for a suitable candidate for the post who would enable them to achieve their ambitions to become a major force within the division.
He said that in the interim the club's first team activities would be run by a small group of senior players reporting to Board member Paul Morris – a former club coach.
Muller took over at the Castle Park-based club during the summer of 2004 and steered them to a runaway victory in last season's Division Two championship.
But a combination of injuries – he was down to just nine backs for the trip to Coventry last weekend – and a wretched away record, has seen the ambitious club languish in the bottom half of the table in their debut season in Division One.
Muller said the club's decision to dispense with his services had "come out of the blue".
He said: "I was on a rolling contract which had to be terminated by mutual consent, which it clearly wasn't in this case. I am considering legal action.
"The players I have spoken to were just as shocked to hear the news as I was. They had not been consulted. I have also had support from supporters.
"I am the type of person who, when they have been kicked in the teeth, gets up and is even stronger. I still have faith in myself and I still have hopes of coaching South Africa."