Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham named new RFL president
Last Updated: 21/12/17 4:48pm
Andy Burnham, the mayor of Greater Manchester and former sports minister, is to become the next president of the Rugby Football League.
The governing body has announced that Burnham, also a former health secretary and the MP for Leigh until earlier this year, will succeed Dean Andrew in July 2018.
Burnham already has a close involvement in the sport through Championship side Leigh Centurions, of whom he is honorary vice-president.
Burnham said: "Being asked to represent the proud sport of rugby league is one of the greatest honours I've ever been given.
"I will seek to use my time in the privileged position of president to raise the profile of the sport in any way I can.
"Greater Manchester is one of the sport's greatest heartlands.
"We have six famous clubs and a grassroots and club structure that is strong. I see it as an important part of my role as Mayor of Greater Manchester to develop the game here and further afield.
"I believe Rugby League has huge untapped potential.
"It is a fantastic sport that builds teamwork, promotes strength of character and brings communities together.
"This passion needs to be nurtured if we are to develop this great game from grassroots upwards and encourage more people, particularly our younger generation, to get involved."