John Kingston happy to stay at Harlequins until season ends

John Kingston insists Harlequins’ board share his desire for him to see out the season at Twickenham Stoop despite his looming departure.

Quins announced on Monday that Kingston – who was awarded a contract extension in January – will step down from his post as director of rugby upon completion of a dismal season that sees the club occupy ninth place in the Premiership.

It is expected that a successor will be appointed by the end of next month and a long list of candidates has been drawn up with senior players to be consulted on who is chosen.

A 35-5 rout by relegation-threatened London Irish last Saturday has served as the low point of the season, but the decision has been taken for Kingston to remain for the last three games of the regular league campaign.

“The fact I’m staying tells you that I’m totally comfortable with where we are in terms of the relationships at the club,” an emotional Kingston said.

“The situation (to stay) was very much a major condition on both sides. The board were very keen I stayed and I was very comfortable that was the case.

“Clearly when you have been at a club for 17 years you are going to be disappointed and upset because it’s something you have given an awful lot to.

“I’m not in emotional turmoil about it – I ‘m very comfortable with where we are at and clearly it is the right decision. I am very comfortable looking forward to the next three weeks starting with Saturday.

“The Irish defeat was totally and utterly unacceptable and we had a very frank review on Monday. We sat down and chatted about the whole thing and I wasn’t alone – everyone knew the performance was completely and utterly sub-standard.

“If anything, it has probably propelled the group forward to put in a performance against Gloucester on Saturday.”