Rugby

Lewsey leaves top Welsh rugby job

2015-11-11 18:02
Rugby ball (File)

London - Former England fullback Josh Lewsey on Wednesday announced that he will step down from his post as the Welsh Rugby Union's head of rugby in January.

The 38-year-old, a member of England's 2003 World Cup-winning team, was appointed in August 2013 and given responsibility for operational and strategic management of the whole of the game in Wales.

Explaining his departure, Lewsey said that he was satisfied with the structures he had put in place, but also that there were "personal matters" preventing him from remaining in Wales "on a full-time basis".

"I came to work here with a specific focus in mind, seeing the opportunity and need to address the underlying structures whilst the national team were so successful -- to attempt to 'fix the roof while the sun is shining'," Lewsey said in a statement released by the WRU.

"Also, my family are from Wales and I know the difference sport, but especially rugby, can make to people's lives and local communities.

"Those factors can transcend education, health and society, which has been a big focus for us.

"That is something we all feel passionate about and to that end, I feel honoured to have worked with some special people and collectively we should feel very proud of the progress we have made."

He added: "To avoid speculation and be entirely honest, alongside the above reaching a stage that it can be self-sustaining, there have been some developments over the last year relating to personal matters, meaning that I couldn't continue to be in Wales on a full-time basis."

The WRU's group chief executive, Martyn Phillips, said: "I want to thank Josh for the dedication, energy and vision he has brought to his role as head of rugby.

"There is no doubt his principle achievement across the past two years has been to drive strategic change and put in place a club hub structure, which is already proving successful in introducing a new core of young players into the game.

"Before he steps down from the WRU, he and I will work on the succession planning in order to maintain the momentum he has created for the game in Wales."

Read more on:    wales  |  rugby
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