Wales Rugby League have appointed Sash Stosic as their new General Manager, replacing Caro Wild who resigned from the post last month.
Stosic, the older brother of former Wakefield Trinity Wildcats prop James, has a wealth of rugby league administration experience behind him, which is essential for Wales as they plan for the 2013 World Cup.
The New Zealand born 29-year old, whose background is Maori on his mother’s side and Serbian-Macedonian on his father’s, has just finished a four year spell as General Manager for the Taranaki Rugby League region in the North Island of New Zealand.
In addition, in 2007-08, he was the Sponsorship and Marketing Manager for the New Zealand Maori Rugby League side and successfully developed the marketing and sponsorship strategies to secure funding ahead of the last Rugby League World Cup in 2008.
Now, after moving to Wales earlier this year, Stosic is looking forward to leading the Welsh Rugby League into the next World Cup in three years time, where it is expected that the country will host a group.
“It is an exciting opportunity to work in such a role for one of rugby league’s oldest playing nations,” said Stosic. “Rugby league in Wales looks like it’s bigger than ever right now with a record number of people watching and playing the sport, at least 16 clubs taking to the field this summer, plus of course the national team are the current European champions.
“Everyone that I’ve started to work with are very excited about the future of Wales Rugby League. Our main aim for this year is to qualify for the 2011 Four Nations and then it’s full steam ahead for the World Cup. There are exciting times ahead for Wales and I’m excited about helping the game grow here in Wales and on the international stage. I’m looking forward to becoming a part of it.”
Wales Rugby League’s Executive Chairman Mark Rowley said: “Sash was our first choice for the role of General Manager for Wales following the interview process and we’re very pleased that he accepted. He has a lot of professional rugby league experience from working in New Zealand. They are the current World Champions and for that you need a professional set-up on and off the field. I know he’s going to bring that professionalism into Wales Rugby League which will be essential as we build our domestic league, which launches at the Welsh Assembly in Cardiff Bay next week, as well as our international sides.”
Wales’ head coach and Crusaders’ assistant coach Iestyn Harris said: “I’m very much looking forward to working with Sash, both in my position as head coach of Wales and assistant coach at Crusaders. I can tell that Sash is very enthusiastic about the job and that’s what we need from a General Manager as we go forward. The next couple of years are vital for Wales at both club and international level and I know that Sash’s experience will be vital to us as we move closer to the next World Cup.”