Ross Bond's messy exit from Northern United is just one of numerous changes among Wellington's top premier club coaching ranks.
Bond has been replaced by Thomas Perenara after just one season in charge of the Porirua club's top team and despite reaching the Jubilee Cup semifinals.
In fact, three of the four semifinalists will have a new head coach next year.
Champions Marist St Pat's have lost coach Clayton Macmillan to the police force.
Oriental Rongotai's Phil Proctor, also the current Wellington Development team coach, is understood to be moving into a new role at the club after six highly successful years in charge of the premiers.
And Wainuiomata are interviewing as a matter of club policy, though head coach Mike Woolett is expected to carry on in some capacity.
Other confirmed changes are the appointment of Shane McLure at Poneke and Peter Green at Petone. McClure, a former Poneke player, takes over after a difficult year that saw Scott Keith step down for personal reasons. The club went on to win the Hardham Cup under McLure's new assistant, Sam Rasch.
Green, a Petone halfback in the late 1980s, replaces former Norths coach Frank Rees. Rees departs after just one season after scraping into the top eight, but failing to win a match in the Jubilee Cup.
But it's Bond's departure at Norths that has had tongues wagging around Wellington's club scene. Bond and his assistant, Okesene Moananu, were upset by a process that saw them replaced without being granted a face-to-face interview.
Instead they received a phone call on the same morning the new appointments were posted on the club's Facebook page.
Bond told The Dominion Post he wasn't particularly impressed at the time with the process, but had already moved on.
"It would have been nice to have had an interview, but look, I enjoyed my time and the boys were great," he said. "I wish the club all the best."
Bond, a former Jubilee Cup-winning coach with Poneke, may well resurface at another club with a number of other premier vacancies.
Norths club chairman Ron Wood admitted the timing of the announcement hadn't been ideal, but was satisfied a thorough review process had been followed.
"We did four weeks of reviews and feedback and we got outside views and in the end it just wasn't going to fit," he said. "We feel now that the club is in a good space."
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- © Fairfax NZ News
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