Tony Smith discusses ‘surprising’ Hull FC exit, Richie Myler appointment and ‘change of direction’

Tony Smith

Tony Smith

Tony Smith has broken his silence on his Hull FC exit – insisting he doesn’t believe it was the right decision to remove him from his post and that he believed the evolving change of leadership at the club influenced the move to sack him.

Smith was sacked by Hull in April following a difficult start to the season. Shortly after that, news emerged that Richie Myler would become the club’s new director of rugby amidst speculation of fresh investment into the club.

Smith insisted that with ‘time and the right sort of resources’, he believed he could have made a success of the role, before reiterating he felt it was ultimately the wrong decision to remove him. Hull have not won a game since.

When asked by Sky Sports for his take on his dismissal and what went wrong, Smith said: “It’s a big project. Time went wrong. Given time and the right sort of resources and support, I don’t think we’d be in the situation they’d be in they’re in at the moment.

“But I can’t back that up, it happened and I’m fine with it. There was a change of direction and me not being there, I’m okay with. However, I don’t think it was a smart step or a right step at that time. By all means change the coach at the end of the season, but let a coach go through that season and then make your change.”

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Smith continued: “It was surprising. It was a drastic change of direction but I understand, after the announcements that came out a few days later, I totally get it. There was a change in direction as to where the leadership was going.”

When asked if he was referring to the appointment of Myler and whether it was linked to a potential investment into the club, he said: “Yeah, absolutely. I would think so. I don’t know all the facts, the ins and outs, but I would imagine so.

“But even that direction changed. Rich was a player I coached and had some time for many years ago, however I’m not sure we would have been the right sort of partnership to get these guys to where they need to be, and this club to where it needs to be.”

When Smith was asked if he was given the option to stay on when Myler was appointed, he said: “No. That was part of the remit, I would suggest.”

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