WINDSOR has announced the departure of head coach Anthony Andrews just weeks after winning the Southern Counties North title, writes Rob Stevens.

Andrews, 33, joined the Home Park-based club in the summer of 2016 and this season won promotion back into South West One East following their relegation during his first year in charge.

He met with the Windsor rugby management committee on Tuesday when it was agreed the club would have someone else in charge for the 2019/20 campaign.

Andrews explained the decision was made by the rugby committee but one that is best for all parties, and he is confident he leaves with the club in a better place than when he arrived.

He told the Observer: “We had a sit down and it was decided it would be best if the club got someone else in charge for next season.

“I’ve build a foundation and really enjoyed my time there, but the club has decided to move in a different direction so that was that.

“The decision fundamentally lies with the club and it is up to them but it’s a decision that’s best for all parties.”

“I’ve put a lot of time and energy into the club but it’s best for all parties to bring in someone fresh.

“Now is the right time for the club to bring in a fresh face and hopefully continue the upward thread.

“There’s no animosity or bad feeling from either party. The opportunity came up and the club decided to go with it.

“Whoever comes in now, I am sure there will be a transition and I’m happy to help in a positive fashion if needed.”

Andrews continued: “I’ve been with the club for three years and thoroughly enjoyed it. We had a good run, especially with promotion this season, and at other times as well.

“I have put a lot of energy into the club and feel I’m leaving it in a much better position that when I started, so I’ve done a good job.

“We got relegated from step six in the last game of the season during my first year in charge, but we re-built the squad and it would have been nice to have a crack at it again.

“I’ve really enjoyed my time at Windsor. It has been full of challenges and I’m grateful for the opportunity, but I can now focus on a few other areas.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to have been head coach for three years. It has been a really great experience for me but my next challenge is somewhere else now.

“I’m looking forward to something new like climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa with my brother this summer.

“I wish Windsor the best for next season. I will miss the boys and challenge of level six but the time is right to bring in someone else to keep on building with the positive rugby we’ve been playing.

“I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to be involved with the club and hopefully I’ve left it in a better place than when I arrived.”

A statement from the club on Wednesday read: “Following a review of the season and the coaching structure, we’re sad to announce the departure of Anthony as Windsor head coach.

“Windsor are in the process of reviewing its coaching structure and will making an announcement of the new structure in the next few weeks.

“The rugby committee, on behalf of Windsor, would like to thank Anthony for all his hard work over the last three years and would like to wish him well in the future.

“Anthony will always be welcome at Windsor.”