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Ian Millward, the Wigan Coach, has dropped his ?150,000 claim for wrongful and unfair dismissal against his former employer St Helens. No compensation in respect of Mr Millward?s wrongful and unfair dismissal claims was paid by the Club.
The Club did make a small payment to Millward?s solicitors to make a contribution towards his legal costs.
St Helens had always maintained that Millward would not be entitled to a penny in compensation and was wasting his money in bringing a claim. The Club has been totally vindicated in that view.
The Board of St Helens stated:
?In early May 2005, we offered Ian Millward a substantial settlement in order to avoid personal embarrassment to him, to the club and to the game which would inevitably result from the public airing of the serious allegations of gross misconduct of which we subsequently found him to be guilty.
?Ian rejected the club?s offer at the time and instead chose to embark on a press campaign in which he trivialised the charges against him. This campaign could have turned St Helens supporters and the sporting public against the Club and its directors. The affair was a significant ordeal for those directors and their families and they are grateful to the public for the support it has shown throughout.
?The Board formed the clear view that Ian was guilty of gross misconduct and that he was acting in a manner which was significantly damaging the club. St Helens had no choice but to dismiss him.
?Ian?s decision to bring a case for wrongful and unfair dismissal against the club was misconceived. The Club were advised that his claim was doomed to failure from the start and that he had no prospect of success. That is presumably why he has withdrawn his claim without receiving a penny of compensation. The club?s stance has been fully vindicated.
?The fact that our memories of Ian will be tainted by his legal action is particularly unfortunate since he had been a coach to a very successful and talented team.
?St Helens have the greatest respect and admiration for their keenest historic rival, Wigan. We are two great clubs in a great game and look forward to continuing one of the great sporting rivalries in a sporting manner.
?The Club is looking forward to the new season and is confident that Daniel Anderson and the players will make 2006 a year of scintillating and successful rugby.?