Warwickshire have received a substantial, if far from unexpected, blow with the departure of bowling coach Graeme Welch to take up a job as elite cricket performance director with Derbyshire.
Welch has returned to the county where he ended his playing career after taking the top job in a revamped coaching set-up at Derby.
He now has the opportunity, which he has craved for some time, to take overall charge of a county coaching set-up. He applied to do that at Edgbaston last winter but was overlooked in favour of Dougie Brown as successor to Ashley Giles as director of cricket.
Ever since the Bears made that decision, the clock has been ticking on Welch’s time at Edgbaston.
One of the most highly-rated bowling coaches in the country, he will be hugely missed at Edgbaston by the bowlers in particular.
Warwickshire have reacted quickly by lining up another former Bear, Alan Richardson, as Welch’s replacement.
Richardson, 38, had another year to run on his playing contract at Worcestershire but will retire in order to seize an early opportinity on the coaching ladder.
A fine bowler and highly-respected person, he may well turn out to be a fine coach but has big shoes to fill in the immediate term.
In terms of bowling-coaching, Warwickshire have lost a sorcerer (in the last four years, Welch pretty much turned all the Bears’ seam-bowlers into England material) and gained an apprentice.
The switch continues the period of back-room transition which the club entered on November 28, 2012, when Giles abruptly quit.
They badly need stability now following the latest change which Brown admits sees the loss of a man who was a huge component of the county championship triumph in 2012.
“Pop has been instrumental in the club’s success over recent seasons,” Brown said. “He has proven to be a fantastic coach and he leaves the bowling unit in a great place.
“Derbyshire is a club he knows well and the restructuring they have undertaken provides an exciting opportunity for him. While we are very sad to see him go, he leaves with our best wishes and some fond memories of the success he has contributed to over recent seasons.”
Welch is very much looking forward to a opportunity to shape an entire county coaching structure - and the strategy underpinning it - exactly the way he wants it.
His first challenge will be to return Derbyshire to the championship Division One after their single season up there ended in ignominious relegation last September.
“The opportunity at Derbyshire will give me the chance to take overall charge of cricket affairs at a club for the first time,” he said.
““I am excited by the prospect, although Edgbaston retains a very special place in my heart.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with the Bears and am proud to have been part of the coaching group that has developed one of the most potent bowling attacks in the country.”
That bowling attack still has that potency, of course, and remains arguably the strongest in the county cricket.
But how will it cope, individually and collectively, without the man who, to a large extent, built it?