Former NZRL Chief Executive, Mr Jim Doyle, has been chosen to conduct a full review of Rugby League pathways and in particular the role of ‘second-tier’ competitions from the Toyota Cup to the NSW and Queensland Cups.
Mr Doyle, who spent three years rebuilding New Zealand Rugby League in terms of both participation and commercial strength, led a restructure of development in New Zealand.
Deeply respected in international circles, the former businessman has been chosen to bring an independent assessment of elite player pathways and competition structures across the NRL, including the NSW and Queensland Leagues.
The need for a whole-of-game review has been identified within the NRL 2013-17 Game Plan and will assist in guiding investment in the competitions and resourcing for referees, administrators and volunteers.
NRL Interim Chief Executive, Mr Shane Mattiske, said that the move was an opportunity to involve an outstanding administrator in a key area of NRL planning:
“Jim’s achievement over the last three years in New Zealand has been simply outstanding.
“He has an incredible business background, a love of Rugby League and a proven track record in both grassroots development and high performance management.
“Importantly, he is a good listener who is able to bring a fresh perspective to a fundamentally important area of the game.”
Mr Doyle will begin his role in the new year and will remain based in New Zealand, where he will also assist the NRL in pursuing business and community programs in that country.
“I’m looking forward to the opportunity to be involved with the NRL and to assist in identifying strategic investment areas,” Mr Doyle said.
“For me the key has been about getting alignment between the leagues and the competitions in a way that allows everyone to push in the one direction.
“Rugby League is full of passionate people and great competitions and the object of this review will be to ensure that they are aligned in a way that means each strengthens the other.
“My role will be to identify the undoubted strengths of what is in place but also to identify the opportunities and it is a really exciting project that will give people a real chance to provide input into the sport’s development.”