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Former British & Irish Lion named as interim chairman of Scottish Rugby

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Chairman Colin Grassie has stepped down from the Scottish Rugby board, leaving his position over two months earlier than expected. Last month it was announced that Grassie would vacate his positions as chairman and non-executive director at the August 15 AGM later this year.


However Scottish Rugby have today confirmed that Grassie has now stepped down from both roles, with his early departure a result of last week’s announcement of CVC’s investment into the PR014.

Grassie will be replaced by former British & Irish Lion, Scotland international and current chairman of the Six Nations, John Jeffrey, who has been unanimously appointed as an independent non-executive director and interim chairman.

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Reds captain Liam Wright speaks out
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Reds captain Liam Wright speaks out

Grassie joined the board of Scottish Rugby as an independent non-executive director in 2012 and was named chairman of the board in January 2017.

Scottish Rugby also confirmed that its search for a permanent chair was ongoing and remains unaffected by Grassie’s early departure.

“I previously indicated my intention to step down in August this year however with the swift and successful completion of the CVC investment into PRO14 and by extension into Scottish Rugby, now is a perfect time to hand over the reins,” Grassie said.

“I have been privileged to be an independent non-executive director and chairman of the board at Scottish Rugby in a sport I love at a crucial period of its development.


“We have achieved many great things over the years as a board and as a sport. Whilst noting we have, like all sports, challenges all around.

“I leave with great pride and gratitude to my fellow board members past and present and acknowledge the hard work of all our staff and volunteers, who do so much to support our great game.

“I am also very pleased to be able to hand the chairman role over to John Jeffrey, an outstanding player, leader and sports administrator.

“With JJ’s knowledge of the game, and wealth of experience at Six Nations and World Rugby, the Scottish Rugby board will be very well served.


“We face, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, significant challenges as a sport but I know the Board at Scottish Rugby will remain focused on guiding the whole sport from the grassroots to the national teams through this crisis in the most sustainable way it can.

“May I finally pass on my thanks to colleagues in other unions with whom I have always appreciated working closely over the years.”

In-coming chairman Jeffrey said: “I was very pleased to accept the role of chairman at Scottish Rugby. Our sport faces significant challenges just now and I hope I can put my experience to good use for the benefit of Scottish Rugby and the whole rugby community in Scotland.

“Under Colin’s chairmanship the board and Scottish Rugby made progress in important areas and I look forward to continuing that work.”


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