Diss look to future as Fautley departs

Diss director of rugby Dave Hall admits relegation is now a probability, in the week that the club parted company with coach Drew Fautley.

Hall has assumed responsibility for co-ordinating coaching after the club brought an end to Fautley's brief spell at the helm, with Diss stranded at the bottom of the table.

A club statement said: 'Drew, who had been acting as assistant coach, took over half way through the season after the resignation for personal reasons of Gavin Brock.

'Unfortunately, despite his enthusiasm and the coaching methods he brought from America, results have not been what he or the club would wish and the club has, reluctantly, decided to look elsewhere. Diss thank Drew for all his hard work and wish him well for the future.'

Hall said that guest coaches would take training until the end of the season, before a permanent appointment is made. He added: 'Realistically, we are relegated, even with 10 games to go, unless something amazing happens, which it might, but we have to be realistic. In fairness to the coaches, the results have been more to do with the player base that we have.

'Of the team that got us promoted, only five players are now left as they all reached an age together where they started young families and could no longer commit to playing.'

Hall said that the club was focusing on developing young talent and added: 'We're not in a position to recruit from outside and we are looking to strengthen the player base through the youth teams, the colts and the under-17s and to bring our own players through.

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'There is a lot of effort going into the clubhouse extensions at the moment and maybe with better facilities we will attract a few more players as well.'

Diss face sixth-placed Staines tomorrow with Hall admitting that results were now of secondary importance: 'We will look to play younger players and give them some experience in this league,' he said. 'Of course we want to win, but I don't think winning games is as important as blooding the younger players for next season.'

Matt Briggs is unavailable for Diss, but Chris Beaird returns after concussion.

North Walsham welcome Ampthill to Scottow tomorrow, with the Vikings buoyed by last week's display against leaders Dorking.

Walsham picked up two bonus points in a narrow 29-24 defeat and will look to build on that performance against fourth-placed Ampthill.

Outside-half Jack Hoyles may be fit to return and the front row could be reinforced by the return of Shaun Woodhouse in place of Dom Roberts.

Flankers Tom Coller and Gerald Hegarty were outstanding at Dorking and may be retained, despite strong competition for their places.