Tabai Matson to leave Bath, return to New Zealand for family reasons

Tabai Matson, right, will return to New Zealand after the Aviva Premiership clash with Northampton Sept. 15. Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Bath head coach Tabai Matson will leave his role at the Aviva Premiership club and return to New Zealand for family reasons.

Matson arrived at the Rec alongside director of rugby Todd Blackadder in 2016 and played an integral role in Bath's fifth-place finish last term.

However, his side's appointment with Northampton Saints on Sept. 15 will be his final involvement, after which he will return home where his mother and mother-in-law are both battling serious illness.

"This has been an incredibly tough decision for me," Matson said. "I have enjoyed every minute at Bath Rugby and we have such a great group of players here who I believe will achieve great success.

"Ultimately, I have made the decision that as a family, we need to be at home in New Zealand, and I appreciate the club's understanding."

Blackadder said: "Tabs [Matson] has done an exceptional job preparing the team for the new season. I know this has been a tough decision for him, but it is a decision we understand and respect.

"He has made a significant contribution to this club and as a group we will continue to reap the rewards of his efforts throughout the course of the season. Tabs will leave us in a better place and we wish him all the best for the future."