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RFU director Nigel Melville to step down in December

The director of professional rugby has been in position since July 2016.

Nigel Melville will step down as the Rugby Football Union's director of professional rugby.

Melville, who joined the governing body in July 2016, has opted to pursue new opportunities and will leave the post next month.

"I am proud of all that the organisation has achieved over the last three years during some challenging times," said Melville in a statement on the England Rugby website.

"I believe that England Rugby is in a great place and that leaving after the 2019 Rugby World Cup is the right time as the RFU start a new era and prepare for the next Rugby World Cup cycle."

📝 More: https://t.co/dNZ6b8VxZ8 pic.twitter.com/YxJKq3kFWL

— England Rugby (@EnglandRugby) November 29, 2019

During Melville's tenure, Eddie Jones' England reached the World Cup final in Japan where they were beaten by South Africa earlier this month.

The 58-year-old also acted as the RFU's interim chief executive in the first half of 2019, ahead of Bill Sweeney's arrival as CEO in May.

Sweeney said: "On behalf of everyone at the RFU, I would like to thank Nigel for his valuable contribution to the organisation and to England Rugby.

"His professionalism and knowledge of rugby and sport is outstanding and he will be missed. In particular, I am grateful for the support that he has given to me since I joined. He leaves with our very best wishes for the future."

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