Jim Mallinder to leave Scottish Rugby at the end of the season
Scottish Rugby’s Performance Director Jim Mallinder has decided to step down from his role in June 2024.
Appointed from the RFU in August 2019 Mallinder has overseen a rise in world rankings for both Scotland’s national teams and a strategic focus on investment for Scotland’s two professional teams in Edinburgh Rugby and Glasgow Warriors.
Following a 10-year coaching role with Northampton Saints between 2007-2017 Mallinder then moved to become England player pathway coach with the RFU in 2018, before joining Scottish Rugby.
Speaking on his decision to step away from his role in Scotland Jim Mallinder said: “I’ve pretty much gone back-to-back in jobs from Premiership Director of Rugby to the RFU to Scottish Rugby and so I’ve decided to stop, take a pause, before looking for something new.
“As anyone working in elite sport will tell you there are a lot of time and travel commitments, so I’d like to spend some time at home once this role ends.
“I’ve hugely enjoyed Scotland and contributing to the successes our teams have had and we have worked hard to improve areas which could be better. Since arriving I’ve been hugely impressed with how our teams perform and the results we can achieve against larger rugby nations. I’d like to thank everyone at Scottish Rugby for their support as there are fantastic people right across the organisation and I wish everyone well for the future. I have also enjoyed working with Rugby Players Scotland, and am proud of the mutually respectful relationship we have with them.”
Mallinder referenced the evolution of the Scotland Women team as it moved from amateur to full-time contracts as one of the points of progress he was proud to be associated with during his tenure.
He also oversaw the delivery of the Super6 competition as it emerged after the Covid pandemic and then evolved into the Super Series which saw Edinburgh and Glasgow Warriors ‘A’ teams, as well as the Fosroc Futures join the tournament.
In the women’s game the development of the Celtic Challenge featuring aspiring players from Scotland, Wales and Ireland was also launched earlier this year and will now continue into 2024 with two Scottish teams aligned to the pro teams.
Mallinder has also contributed to a recent review of the youth male pathways programmes following the disappointing progress by Scotland U20s in the World Junior Trophy tournament last summer.
Scottish Rugby Chief Executive Mark Dodson said: “Jim is a rugby man through and through and I’d like to thank him for his leadership and contribution to our high-performance programmes over the past four years.
“Jim has given a lot to this role and so I respect that he now wants to take time out and reflect before deciding what the next step is he wants to take in his career.
“Jim has overseen significant strategic steps in our high-performance programmes in recent years and he leaves with our thanks and best wishes for the future.”
Scottish Rugby will now commence a recruitment process to appoint a new Performance Director.