Yamaha Jubilo head coach Katsuyuki Kiyomiya said Tuesday he will retire at the end of the Japan Rugby Top League season.
“I’m proud of this club. It has grown into a club worthy of pride,” Kiyomiya said following training at the team’s base in Iwata, Shizuoka Prefecture.
“I feel like I’m leaving it in a good place for the next (coach). This is the right time.”
Jubilo finished first in the Top League’s White Conference standings this season but lost their semifinal playoff against Suntory Sungoliath on Saturday. They face Toyota Verblitz this Saturday to determine third and fourth place.
Once tipped to succeed Eddie Jones as Japan coach, Kiyomiya fell out of favor with many following criticism of the Australian just before the start of the 2015 Rugby World Cup.
Kiyomiya, 51, said he will speak further about his future at a news conference in January.