Entrepreneur Mike Ashley's recently floated Sports World empire suffered another blow yesterday as chairman David Richardson quit just three months after the group's stock market debut.
Mr Richardson said he had been "unable to establish a strong working relationship with the executive team" as he announced his resignation.
He will be replaced in the interim by Simon Bentley, board director and former long-time Blacks Leisure chairman and chief executive.
The change comes as shares in newly-listed Sports Direct International continue to disappoint, having dropped by nearly a third in value since flotation at the end of February.
The stock market listing has thrust Mr Ashley into the spotlight, after years of avoiding media attention.
The 42-year-old founded the business in 1982 and has taken Sports World from third place in the UK sportswear sector to top spot in the space of three years. He netted #929 million after selling 43 per cent of his business in the flotation.
As well as seeing its share price under pressure, the business has been criticised for not being close enough to shareholders and analysts. Sports Direct also recently admitted poor sales growth last month.