Matt O'Connor: Leicester's former Australia international to return to Tigers as coach

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O'Connor won three Premiership titles in his previous spell with the Tigers up to 2013

Former Australia international Matt O'Connor is to return to Leicester Tigers in the role of head coach, replacing Aaron Mauger.

Mauger, a former New Zealand back, will leave the role following Saturday's Premiership game against Northampton.

O'Connor, who won three Premierships as a Tigers coach, will take over in early April, subject to being issued a visa.

Mauger had been in charge since the long-serving Richard Cockerill was sacked as director of rugby in January.

O'Connor, 46, worked under Cockerill between 2010 and 2013, before leaving to take the top job at Leinster and subsequently going to work for Queensland Reds and Tonga.

The switch has been announced just a day after the Premiership's fifth-placed side edged out Exeter in the Anglo-Welsh Cup final to claim the club's first silverware in four years.

"We're delighted Matt O'Connor has accepted an offer to return to Welford Road," said Tigers chairman Peter Tom. "The club has conducted an exhaustive search to find the right person.

"One of the most significant factors in our deliberations was experience of the Premiership and what it takes to win the competition.

"Matt has that experience as head coach during a successful period. The team also topped the try-scoring figures in the Premiership four times in that five-year period with Matt in charge of the attack."

Leicester wing Telusa Veainu expressed his surprise, tweeting: