London - South African Gary Gold left his position as director of rugby at English Premiership club Bath on Monday.
The surprise move came with Bath lying third in the Premiership table after an impressive start to the season, which also sees them sit top of their European Challenge Cup pool.
"Bath Rugby can today confirm that Gary Gold has left the club with immediate effect," a statement from Bath announced.
"The decision was taken following a re-structure in the rugby department and with the best interests of both Gary and the club in mind.
"No further comment will be made until it is appropriate."
Gold, 46, has been at Bath since May 2012, initially as head coach.
The former Springbok assistant coach became director of rugby in the summer, with Mike Ford becoming head coach.
Gold had overseen a gradual turnaround in Bath's fortunes: they finished seventh last term but extensive summer recruitment has helped them start the campaign strongly and they are on a nine-match unbeaten run at the time of their rugby director's departure.