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No quick-fix in Mitchell saga

Wed, 04 Jul 2012 14:44
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It could be another three to four weeks before the hearing actually takes place
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John Mitchell versus the Lions is set to become a protracted saga.

Golden Lions Rugby Union President Kevin de Klerk confirmed to this website on Wednesday that there would be no 'quick fix' for a situation that arose after they suspended their Kiwi coach last week.

"We are waiting for a date to be set for the hearing," De Klerk told this website, adding: "We would like it to be resolved as soon as possible."

The Lions boss estimated that it could be another "three to four weeks" before the hearing actually takes place.

In the meantime, the matter remains in the hands of the two parties' lawyers, as they follow the process as laid out in the Labour Act.

This means that former Springbok lock Johan Ackermann, who served as forwards coach under Mitchell, will continue as caretaker head coach for the Lions' remaining Super Rugby matches - against the Rebels this coming Saturday and the Bulls a week later.

He is being assisted by another Kiwi, former All Black flyhalf Carlos Spencer.

The Lions suspended Mitchell following complaints by their leading players.

Last week De Klerk said the charges weren't purely player-driven, with a range of issues - including problems between Mitchell and his employers - at the heart of the dispute.

By Jan de Koning

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