Rooks management duo to depart

By Ian Townsend

Tony Russell and Joe Vines to step down in the summer

Prior to Saturday's victory over Hashtag United, Lewes announced that it would be the last home match for boss Tony Russell and his second in command Joe Vines. The duo will remain in charge for the trip to Italy in the Fenix Trophy next month, but after that the Rooks will be looking to find a new occupant for the hotseat.

Chief Executive Maggie Murphy- who is also about to depart the club- stated:

“We thank Tony and Joe for the countless hours that go into managing at this level and for helping to create some truly memorable moments with some truly memorable players they brought in. We wish them the best”.

Tony and Joe joined the club in April 2021, after departing Cray Wanderers- first steering the Wands to the South East title and then establishing them as a top flight club. They were in second place and looking certain of a play off spot when the pandemic ended the 2019-20 campaign early. Prior to the spell at Cray, there was also a title win at VCD Athletic a few years before.

In his departure statement, Tony mentioned repeated director changes, the departure of former Chair Stuart Fuller, and variable wage budgets which have necessitated a rebuild of the squad every summer as factors in his decision to depart. He also explains that it was a decision he made before Christmas- and you can read more here.

The club statement is available here.

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Where next?

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