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RFU set for consultation

The Rugby Football Union will consult all key stakeholders in the game - from grass-roots to elite level - before deciding whether to back proposals to radically overhaul the organisation's governance structure.

Nigel Boardman, a partner in the law firm Slaughter and May, has delivered a report to the RFU's council which contained 150 recommendations for modernising the way the union is run.

The current structure was described by sports minister Hugh Robertson as being "like a throwback to the previous era" and not equipped to run a modern professional sport. The council debated the 161-page Slaughter and May report and resolved to "consult the whole game about becoming a world leader in sporting governance".

Independent non-executive director Miles Templeman will lead a steering group to consult with all stakeholders "and then take action on those Slaughter and May recommendations".

RFU president Willie Wildash said: "We have a great opportunity to define how we run the game we all love and feel so passionate about.

"We feel a huge responsibility to players, coaches, referees, supporters, sponsors - everybody involved in rugby union at all levels - not only to reflect humbly on how we run our game but to take real progressive action.

"We should thank Nigel Boardman and his colleagues for such a detailed report and 150 recommendations, many of which, if adopted, would fundamentally improve how we operate.

"Every one of those recommendations will be closely studied and discussed. Some of this will take time and it is vitally important that it is done thoroughly and correctly to benefit the whole game.

"The principles of good governance must be reinforced but we are committed to the ultimate objective of ensuring that we have the right governance structures in place to support those principles.

"Miles Templeman is highly respected and experienced in governance and the Council unanimously decided that he should lead a group that will be representative of all areas of the game."

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