Former All Blacks coach John Mitchell quit as Sale head coach on Saturday after just a month in charge of the English Premiership rugby club.
Mitchell led Sale to just their second league win of the season against Worcester on Friday, but less than 24 hours later Sale confirmed the Kiwi had left his role to return to South Africa for personal reasons.
The 48-year-old only joined Sale at the end of November, having previously worked for them on a consultancy basis, as the struggling Sharks battle to avoid relegation from the Premiership.
Sale owner Brian Kennedy said in a statement: “John was brought in on a consultancy basis with a view to the possibility of being employed in a longer term position within Sale Sharks.
“He has had to return to South Africa for personal reasons which we respect. We are grateful for his valuable and insightful contributions albeit for a shorter term than envisaged.
“Steve Diamond, Bryan Redpath and Pete Anglesea will continue to coach the side, implementing many of John’s ideas, and building on last night’s excellent performance.”
Mitchell has a role as technical advisor at the Johannesburg-based Lions team in Super Rugby, having been moved from his position as head coach following a legal wrangle.