South African Rugby Union president Oregan Hoskins has resigned from his position after 10 years.
He made the startling announcement on Wednesday morning during the federation’s general meeting in Johannesburg.
Hoskin said he decided to step down in order to start the next phase of his career; and also give room for another person to steer the ship of the rugby union.
“Being president of SA Rugby has become a full-time job and with my term due to end in 18 months’ time I decided that; after a decade in the job, it was now time to start the next phase of my career; although I have no firm plans as yet; and allow someone else to take on this important role,” he said.
He recalled enjoying a remarkable ten-and-a-half years in one of the most high-profile roles in South African sport; and expressed satisfaction with the achievements he made.
Hoskins has been in the firing line with 10 provincial unions out of the 14 rugby unions calling for his removal – so he actually jumped before he was pushed.
As president of the Rugby federation, Oregan Hoskins received several backlashes and criticism, especially when he failed to sternly handle poor performance charges against former Springbok team coach, Heyneke Meyer in 2015.
He also had a row with Saru chief executive Jurie Roux, and moved for his suspension after Roux was accused of financial mismanagement during his time at Stellenbosch University.
Hoskins took over leadership from Brian van Rooyen as South African Rugby president in 2006 – making him the longest-serving president.
Remarkably, he was also an international figure; having served as vice-chairman of World Rugby alongside former chairman Bernard Lapasset. They were replaced by Bill Beaumont of England and former Argentina captain Agustin Pichot last month.
Meanwhile, SA Rugby confirmed that Vice president Mark Alexander will replace the outgoing president until an election takes place.