Monday 20th January 2020
The Welsh Rugby Players Association (WRPA) - the collective voice of professional rugby players in Wales - today thanked departing Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) Chief Executive, Martyn Phillips, for his efforts to improve player welfare during his five years in post.
Specifically, the WRU supports players through funding the WRPA delivered Personal Development Programme (PDP), which focuses on Life Skills, Wellbeing, Vulnerabilities and Career & Education. The PDP is designed to help players to maximise the opportunities around them during their playing careers and aids their transition into future employment.
Ken Owens, WRPA Chairman and Scarlets, Wales and British & Irish Lions hooker, said:
“On behalf of rugby players in Wales, I’d like to thank Martyn for what he’s done for player welfare while he’s been running the WRU and wish him all the best for the future once he stands down.
“The WRU supporting and empowering the WRPA to deliver a world-class personal development programme for players is much appreciated and absolutely vital.”
Barry Cawte, WRPA Chief Executive, said:
“I’ve known Martyn for a relatively short time, but under his leadership the WRU and WRPA have been developing a stronger and more effective relationship together over the last year. I’d like to thank him for listening and taking player issues seriously.
“The WRPA looks forward to working with Martyn’s successor as we seek to contribute to the growth and prosperity of the game in Wales while ensuring players have a strong voice at the top table of our sport.”
About The WRPA
A not-for-profit professional association, the Welsh Rugby Players Association (WRPA) represents, develops, promotes and protects professional rugby players in Wales. The WRPA is a member of the International Rugby Players, the international association responsible for representing all professional players around the world.
The WRPA is mandated by its members to act in their collective best interest in relation to player welfare and issues affecting the game in Wales. The association acts as a conduit for member concerns and provides a platform whereby issues surrounding their welfare can be raised at the highest levels by the Executive Board.
The WRPA Personal Development Programme (PDP) assists players in achieving a sporting/lifestyle balance during their careers and encourages them to maximise the opportunities that are open to them as professional rugby players. In doing so it ultimately makes the transition out of their professional playing career and into future employment as smooth as possible.
The WRPA provides players with resources to help with public speaking, media skills and leadership. It advises players on social media usage and how to make the best use of their professional brand. It is through the personal brand promotion that the WRPA aims to encourage as many aspiring players to continue on their rugby journey so that no talent is lost or investment wasted.
The WRPA continually engages and runs initiatives to protect the game in Wales. If it stands to either negatively impact the game or the welfare of players, the WRPA aims to ensure it is tackled.