Rob Andrew is set to leave the Rugby Football Union (RFU) after a decade at the end of the season following confirmation of his resignation. The former England fly-half left Newcastle Falcons back in 2006 in order to become the governing body's elite rugby director before assuming the role of rugby operations director during an organisational reshuffle instigated by John Steele five years later.
He then served as director of professional rugby, a post he will relinquish after holding discussions with chief executive Ian Ritchie. The RFU have confirmed that the 53-year-old has agreed to continue his work on a new long-term agreement with Premiership Rugby.
"After 10 years at the RFU and with the impending conclusion of the second Heads of Agreement, it feels like the right time to step down at the end of the season," Andrew said following confirmation of his departure.
"My role has primarily been to set up a structure that would ultimately deliver long-term success to England through a pipeline of talented players coming through the academy system. Bringing together the clubs to support the new academy scheme required recognition from the RFU to reward them to bring on successful academy players and I believe we have achieved this."
The RFU have already moved to announce Andrew's successor, with former Wasps and Gloucester director of rugby Nigel Melville set to stand down as CEO of USA Rugby in order to return to England during the summer. His wide remit will apparently include overseeing relationships with Premiership Rugby and focusing upon the Elite Player Squad (EPS) agreement and academy systems.
"I would like to thank USA Rugby for their support and I am very proud of what has been achieved in the organisation and the game in the US over the last decade," Melville said. "I feel I am leaving USA Rugby in a very strong place to continue the growth it has experienced in recent years and keep improving internationally.
"However, I am now hugely excited about this opportunity to join England Rugby in what is a very buoyant time. This year already the men have claimed the Grand Slam, the domestic game has continued to thrive, the U20s are looking to win the World Rugby U20 Junior World Championship in Manchester and the men and women will compete in the sevens competition at the Olympics in Rio for the first time ever. I am looking forward to helping bring further success to England teams."