Affinity partnership scheme
The WRPA Affinity Partnership Scheme was established in 2009 and was designed to expose a range of different products and services to the players.

In return WRPA members receive discounts and offers from the partnering organisations and businesses. Over the years the WRPA has built relationships with over 40 different businesses across Wales and the local area and the scheme has been very successful in promoting our partner's products and services to the members.

Since then, the Affinity Partners have been updated and broaden alongside the WRPA members areas of interest.
Our objectives
- Provide a united voice and body through which the all members can express their views.
- Provide advice and assistance in issues relating to members employment.
- Work with the Welsh Rugby Union and Regions to progress the game in Wales.
- Provide advice on career and educational development.

- Collective representation on employment issues and representing individual Players through any employment disputes.
- Collective representation on Player Insurance issues and representing individual players with their claims.
- Updating members on developments in relevant areas of law (e.g. tax, image rights and employment).
- Developing a financial benefits package for all members.
- Monitoring anti-doping and betting integrity programmes.

- Facilitating cost effective and good quality professional advice (lawyers, accountants and IFAs).
- Providing advice, guidance and support on non-rugby development through the Player Development Programme.
- Financial education of members.
- Providing a members' affinity programme.
- Promoting personal well-being and health.
Andries Pretorius
Chief Executive Officer

Following the approval of the executive committee Andries Pretorius was appointed as chief executive officer in March 2017.

Andries came through the Blues academy in 2009/10 and played for the Blues for 5 seasons and was appointed Club Captain in 2012. During his playing career he was part of the 2013 Grand Slam 6 Nations squad and gained two caps during the summer tour.

Andries brings not only a playing background but extensive academic qualifications and work experience which he completed whilst playing. After his undergraduate degree in Sport Business Management he completed a Masters Degree in Business Psychology through South Wales University where he specialised in employee wellbeing in professional sports. During this time Andries also worked along side Dr. Paul Thomas and Andy McCann for consultancy firm DNA Definitive as a leadership and management consultant.

Tel: 07531 098226
Philippa Hearnden
Business Support Executive

Philippa joined the WRPA in 2015 as Business Support Executive, working to manage the WRPA’s business operations, affinity partner scheme, Wales internationals and the management of players’ WRPA memberships.

Previous to working with the WRPA, Philippa balanced obtaining a First Class BA Sports Management degree with an array of voluntary work at both National Level within Sports Wales’ Ambassador Programme and the London 2012 Paralympic Games; to Local Authority Sports Development teams and Unions which led to a host of awards and honours.

Tel: 07879 415139
Sarah Nightingale
Player Development Manager

Sarah joined the WRPA in 2014 as Player Development Manager, working to ensure players are supported upon a range of welfare and development areas.

Sarah’s career history centres around an education background, within a University Sports Department and Head of PE at a number of schools. Sarah’s experience in Performance Sport comes both as a sportswomen and also a Lifestyle Advisor, having worked with both the EIS and TASS.

As the Player Development Manager, Sarah now works within the four regions to provide the support and service to players from a personal to rugby specific nature in line with players’ Personal Development Programme.

Tel: 029 2082 2245
About WRPA
International Rugby Players’ Association
The WRPA sits underneath the umbrella organisation the International Rugby Players’ Association. Founded in 2001, the International Rugby Players’ Association works to promote, advance and protect the international interests of professional rugby players through national associations such as the WRPA.

Professional rugby players throughout all countries and playing environments face similar issues and opportunities; by working collectively, professional rugby players are enabled to be more effective at addressing issues of importance to players and the game. A key technique in joining national associations involves monthly conference calls with Player Development Managers(PDMs).

Further information about IRPA can be found on their website.