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Ospreys Chairman, Roger Blyth, has paid tribute to outgoing CEO Andrew Hore, while also confirming details of a new senior management appointment at the region.

Andrew Hore confirmed his departure next month to take up a new role in Australian rugby.

The New Zealander has been at the Ospreys for the last eight years, initially appointed as Elite Performance Director and tasked with restructuring the Senior, Elite Youth and Community management teams within the rugby side of the organisation, before expanding that role to oversee the business as a whole.

He will head Down Under next month, and Blyth said that the impact he has made on the business ensures that he will leave a positive legacy.

“Everyone at the Ospreys will be well aware of the impact Andrew has had across all areas of the business during his time here, and will be forever grateful for all his efforts to improve our organisation” said Blyth.

“He has been able to embed himself at the heart of our culture, his innovative thinking and wider outlook on all aspects of the business and sport of rugby enabling him, with the support of his colleagues, to put in place systems and structures that have helped ensure we are now in a stronger position than ever before as a sustainable business.

“Andrew brought energy, drive and knowledge to the Ospreys during his time here and I’m sure Andrew would agree that he has also learnt considerably from our environment, allowing him to develop as a manager.

“Although Andrew is moving on for a fresh challenge, he is leaving with the thanks and best wishes of everybody at the Ospreys for his efforts, and the knowledge that the development pathway he has established on both sides of the business, rugby and commercial, means that we now have a strong management team in place that will continue to drive us forward in all areas.”

Blyth also confirmed that Andrew Millward, currently Rugby General Manager, would take on the role of Managing Director and, with the support of the Board, assume most of the outgoing CEO’s duties. Together with the Board and his senior management team, he will be responsible for driving the business forward for the foreseeable future. The handover will begin immediately.

“This is an appointment that we are all in agreement with as a Board of Directors” he continued.

“It is an appointment that provides us with continuity, Andrew is someone who has grown into this role having previously overseen the player development pathway within the region before becoming Rugby General Manager.

“He understands fully our environment, who we are, what we stand for and what our ambitions for the future are, and cares passionately about this region having served it with distinction on and off the field for so long.

“Andrew will take on most of the current CEO’s duties while, where necessary, we will look at other areas within the business to fully cover the role. Thanks to the work done over the last four or five years, we have a strong, commercially focused senior management team in place, who will continue to work tirelessly to drive the business forward with the full support and guidance of the Directors.

“Clearly, with Andrew stepping up to the new role, it provides an opportunity for us to enhance the senior rugby management team and strengthen our day-to-day operations at Llandarcy and that is something we are presently looking at.”

Millward has served the region on and off the field since its 2003 inception, having previously played more than 100 times for Neath.

Named in the starting line-up for the region’s first ever Celtic League fixture against Ulster in September 2003, Millward won two league titles with the Ospreys as well as featuring in the historic 24-16 victory over Australia in November 2006, playing 94 times for the Ospreys in total. He also featured for Swansea and Bridgend while an Osprey and spent a short time as Forwards Coach for the Ravens.

Having hung up his boots in 2008 he was appointed WRU Regional Performance Manager for the Ospreys region, working closely with regional age-grade and senior team coaches, as well as club coaches across the region and WRU development staff operating within Ospreylian boundaries, to ensure the on and off-the-field development of young players.

He was then appointed Rugby General Manager, overseeing the growth, development and day-to-day management of the community, elite youth development and senior divisions within the rugby arm of the business.

Speaking about his appointment, Millward said:

“Andrew Hore has made a huge contribution to our on and off field success during his time with the Ospreys and his are big shoes to fill. It’s an exciting opportunity for me and I’m looking forward to continuing to play a part in ensuring we stay at the forefront of European rugby, on and off the field.”