Details regarding Mark McCall’s condition are few and far between, though Saracens’ director of rugby won’t be available for the upcoming schedule as he takes a “short break” for medical reasons.
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The 54-year-old—who is approaching his 13-year anniversary at the StoneX Stadium—has so far led a successful resurgence after the club was relegated in 2020 due to salary cap breaches.
McCall’s assistant staff will be expected to take charge of the team for an indefinite amount of time, with the club on track to challenge for the Premiership title in its first season back in the first tier.
“For medical reasons Mark McCall will be taking a short break from being director of rugby at Saracens,” read a club statement.
“People will always come first at our club and Mark will be given all of the support and time he needs.
“Meanwhile we would ask that everyone respects Mark’s privacy. Mark is obviously more than confident in the coaching team he has worked with for many years to temporarily take the reins.”
Well wishes flooded in for the five-time Premiership and three-time Champions Cup-winning coach following Friday’s announcement.
Premiership rivals Sale Sharks were among the first to comment as the club’s Twitter account responded: “All the best Mark, hope to see you back at the StoneX when you’re ready!”
Bath followed up with their own message of support: “Everyone at Bath Rugby sends their best wishes to Mark and hope to see him back as soon as possible.”
Northampton Saints also tweeted in support: “Best wishes from all at the Gardens, Mark.”
Former Wales lock Dominic Day retired under McCall at Sarries in 2019, and he praised his old coach as he wrote: “One of the greats! All the best Mark!”
Saracens sit second in the Premiership table ahead of Sunday’s visit to Wasps, while they’re also in with a chance of making it to the knockout stages of the Challenge Cup.
The club will hope to have their commander-in-chief back overseeing matchday action as soon as possible, with McCall hoping to advance one of the most successful coaching records in European rugby.