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1 June, 2021

Snake bite to finish Kelly

The CQUniversity Cairns Taipans have announced that coach Mike Kelly will not be returning as Head Coach next season, with the board taking the club in another direction ahead of the 2021-22 season.

By Peter McCullagh

After what could only be described by fans as a season from hell, the Taipans Board stepped in to announce their decision.

In an unremarkable season, the Taipans have played 35 games and secured only 8 wins. Their record at home this season has proved a disappointment for fans with 6 wins and 12 losses.

In a COVID impacted season forcing multiple changes to playing schedules the Taipans failed to adapt and we outgunned even by the New Zealand Breakers playing much of the season in Australia due to travel restriction.

Kelly took the helm of the Taipans in 2018, and in just his second season managed an impressive semi-finals appearance and was named 2019-20 NBL Coach of the Year.

Taipans President Troy Stone said this was a difficult decision for the board, but one that needed to be made for the club’s future direction.

“It has been a difficult year for everyone, and our club has certainly had its own unique challenges over the past 12 months.

“This was a hard decision for the board to make but it was identified as one of the necessary steps to take in order to project the club forward.

“We admire how positive Mike has been through some tough times in the past three seasons, and we are equally grateful to Annette and the Kelly family for their support.

“Mike’s contributions to the club and the Cairns community have been nothing short of excellent, and his values and integrity is, and has been a real strength.

“The board and staff sincerely thank him for his passion and commitment to the team.”

Management will enter discussions with a number of suitable coaching candidates in coming weeks.

The Taipans complete their 2021 campaign on Wednesday June 2 in New Zealand.

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