Fitzgerald's 30-year reign at Eels ends - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Fitzgerald's 30-year reign at Eels ends

09/06/2009 07:56:41 PM Comments (0)

Controversial former Parramatta chief executive Denis Fitzgerald says he has "no regrets" after he ended his 30-year reign with the Eels on Tuesday.

Fitzgerald and the Eels officially terminated their association after a mutual agreement was struck to end his employment.

The 60-year-old, whose power base was effectively eroded when five new directors from the Rebel 3P group were voted on to the leagues club's board on April 26, had been stood down on May 5 pending an investigation into the recent board election.

Fitzgerald said he holds no animosity towards the rebels who ousted him from power and said he will not be changing his outspoken ways after his departure from the club he served for almost 40 years as a player and administrator.

"I think I am the longest serving chief executive of a club since SG Ball at South Sydney who was there for 50 years, and that is something I am proud of," he told Fairfax Radio Network.

"I think it is the same in any election, you have to make sure you have got the numbers.

"With some good reason I suppose, there were some people who were disenchanted with the way the football club was going on the field.

"And because I take no prisoners and I have upset a few people on the way, a number of people organised enough support for wholesale changes at the football club back in December and then in the leagues club in April."

Fitzgerald said he had no intention of looking for another job in the NRL and would be seeking employment in the licensing industry.

"I couldn't get another job which would put me up against Parramatta ... it's been a passion all of my life and being a Parramatta boy and a player here it has been a large chunk of my life and I have loved my time here," he said.

"But I am happy to keep going the way I am ... the support I have had from my friends has been terrific and I have no regrets about what I have done or said in my 40 years as a player and administrator at Parramatta."

Veteran Eels forward Nathan Hindmarsh said he was surprised of news of Fitzgerald's departure but said he didn't think it would change things at the club too drastically.

"I didn't really have a problem with Dennis Fitzgerald and the way he ran the club," Hindmarsh said.

"But in saying that my job was to play football not to find out how the club was running and all that type of stuff.

"It's a bit of surprise but they've genuinely been challenged and supporters and members wanted to see a change and that's what they've got.

"As players our job is to play rugby league and leave all that business stuff up to the board members. Until we know who are new boss is we'll just continue to play footy."

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