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Murphy praises Blackett review

Acting Rugby Football Union chairman Paul Murphy believes the Blackett Review has offered "clear recommendations" for those in Twickenham's corridors of power.

The report, put together by a five-man group, headed by RFU disciplinary officer Judge Jeff Blackett, will not be made public. Sections of it are thought to be highly critical.

Murphy said: "We were concerned that the reputation of the RFU had been damaged by the recent events which were played out so vividly in the media."

He added: "We wanted to ensure that we put in place an independent panel capable of undertaking a comprehensive and expert review of what took place so we could learn lessons for the future and take the first step forward towards rebuilding that reputation.

"I would commend the members of the panel, because that is exactly what we received. Their report was based on detailed evidence, was thorough and gave clear recommendations.

"In the end, after lengthy discussion, we have taken what we believe are the right decisions for the future of the game and the union itself."

The report was digested during a four-hour RFU Council meeting on Sunday after the panel had looked in great detail at circumstances surrounding the hiring and firing of former Twickenham chief executive John Steele.

Decisions reached by the council included Martyn Thomas withdrawing his nomination for board chairman at the RFU AGM on Sunday afternoon; council member Murphy being appointed interim chairman; and the whole RFU board being given a vote of confidence.

But less than nine weeks before the 2011 World Cup kicks off in New Zealand, the RFU has no permanent chairman, no permanent chief executive and they are still searching for their first performance director.


From Belfast Telegraph