WRU 'trawling world' to find Roger Lewis' successor - Gethin

Welsh Rugby Union chief executive Roger Lewis (left) with president Dennis Gethin during Wales' 2013 tour of Japan
Welsh Rugby Union chief executive Roger Lewis (left) with president Dennis Gethin during Wales' 2013 tour of Japan

The Welsh Rugby Union is "trawling the world" to find a successor to chief executive Roger Lewis, according to the Union's president Dennis Gethin.

Lewis, who was appointed in 2006, announced in February he will stand down after this autumn's World Cup.

Gethin says the WRU has started the process to find its next chief executive.

"The head-hunters are trawling the world and I'm sure they will come up with the right person," he said.

"I'm sure the new chief executive has very big boots to fill, but I'm sure we will find the right person."

Lewis was appointed in a similar manner, as he took the role after input from an executive recruitment firm.

He had previously worked in the music and media industries, and his achievements with the WRU include appointing Warren Gatland as national coach.

Roger Lewis' CV

Despite helping reduce the Millennium Stadium debt and overseeing record financial turnover, Lewis' reign has been controversial.

The WRU's relationship with professional teams Cardiff Blues, Scarlets, Newport Gwent Dragons and Ospreys descended into a bitter and prolonged civil war over governance and funding.

The dispute eventually ended in August 2014 with a £60m deal that lasts until 2020.

The most successful aspect of Lewis' tenure is arguably Wales' performances on the pitch.

Under Gatland, Wales have won three Six Nations titles and reached the 2011 World Cup semi-finals.

Although Wales have been drawn alongside England, Australia, Fiji and Uruguay in their 2015 World Cup pool, Gethin believes they could win the tournament for the first time.

"I know they say we're in the 'pool of death' but I'm sure Wales could win the trophy itself, and I'm confident we will do," he added.

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