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News

Paul Nixon relieved of duties as Leicestershire head coach

Club chairman calls for "togetherness" as senior players leave, while Thomas and Taylor take temporary charge

Paul Nixon leads training, Leicestershire v Lancashire, Vitality Blast, Grace Road, August 29, 2020

Paul Nixon had been head coach of Leicestershire for six years  •  Getty Images

Paul Nixon has been relieved of his duties by Leicestershire and is unlikely to return to his position as head coach.
Nixon, 52, had spent almost six years in the role, but has now been placed on gardening leave, the club have confirmed to ESPNcricinfo.
"Following recent speculation, I can confirm that head coach Paul Nixon is on leave," John Thorpe, Leicestershire's chairman, said in a statement on Friday. "We recognise that this news may have come as a surprise to our fans and whilst we are not able to provide further details at this stage, we will keep you updated when we are legally able to do so."
Leicestershire had started the season well and sit third in Division Two ahead of the resumption of the County Championship this weekend. One of their two wins out of seven - there have been four draws - was a first victory at Headingley since 1910.
However, they have since won just two Vitality Blast matches out of 11, and sit bottom of the North Group. They are out of contention for the quarter-finals and likely to win the wooden spoon.
Nixon's comes after it was confirmed that three first-team players will leave Grace Road at the end of the season. Seamer Chris Wright is heading to Sussex on a two-year deal, while left-arm spinner Callum Parkinson and allrounder Colin Ackermann have signed with Durham on three-year contracts.
Assistant coach Alfonso Thomas and batting consultant James Taylor have been placed in temporary charge ahead of Friday's night fixture against Northamptonshire in the Blast, while Peter Handscomb will deputise as captain in place of Ackermann, who has "stepped back from the role".
"I have seen first-hand the work that is going on behind the scenes to strengthen the squad and we hope to be able to provide some positive updates very soon," Thorpe added.
"Now is a time for togetherness, and for us all to get behind Alfonso Thomas, James Taylor, and the players ahead of our clash with Northants tonight and for the remainder of the season."
Nixon did not offer a comment when contacted by ESPNcricinfo.

Vithushan Ehantharajah is an associate editor at ESPNcricinfo