World Rugby appoint Horrox as new women's chief
Sally Horrox has been appointed as World Rugby's director of women's rugby, the global governing body announced Wednesday.
Horrox will take up her new post in May, just months away from the Women's World Cup in New Zealand, after leaving the international sports and brand consultancy which she co-founded in 2015.
The 12th and final qualifier for a World Cup that was held over for a year due to the Covid-19 pandemic -- it gets underway on October 8 and runs till November 12 -- will be resolved on Friday when Colombia play Scotland in Dubai.
Horrox is a former advisor to Europe's UEFA and England's Football Association, among other sporting bodies.
Her role is a slightly re-modelled one to the one fulfilled by Katie Sadleir, who left her post as General Manager of Women's Rugby to become the chief executive of the multi-sport Commonwealth Games.
Horrox's chief responsibility will revolve around World Rugby's women in rugby 2017-25 plan, which was refreshed in late 2021.
She will lead the women in rugby team, collaborating with colleagues in World Rugby's competition, performance, fan engagement and revenue divisions, as well as member unions, to accelerate the growth of the women's game both on and off the field.
"I'm delighted and hugely privileged to be joining World Rugby to lead what is regarded as the most significant area of growth for the game globally," said Horrox in a World Rugby statement.
"With increased investment, two World Cups (the Sevens version in Cape Town runs from September 9-11) this year and the launch of WXV, a new annual women's global competition in 2023, it is an incredibly exciting time for the sport.
"I am committed to accelerating the development of women in rugby at every level, and to promoting player welfare and gender equity in all that we do."
World Rugby chief executive Alan Gilpin said he was delighted someone of Horrocks' experience would now be overseeing the women's game.
"Sally is well known in the sports industry for getting results and brings with her considerable commercial, legal and strategic acumen and a deep understanding of the community and elite sports environments on an international basis," he said.
"She knows how to successfully develop women's sport and has a proven track record in major events, developing new competition structures and restructuring commercial rights."