World Rugby chief Bernard Lapasset today confirmed that he will not be seeking re-election as Chairman of the international federation in May.

Lapasset is stepping down to concentrate on his role as co-chairman of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games bid committee. Lapasset informed his World Rugby Executive Committee colleagues in Dublin this morning, saying:

“After careful consideration I have taken the decision not to seek a further term of office as Chairman of World Rugby. I feel that this is the right time for‎ me to complete my current term and pass on the ball to one of my superb colleagues. 
“Rugby has never been healthier and I am so proud of what we have achieved in growing the game around the globe, securing rugby sevens on the Olympic programme, staging wonderful tournaments, including Rugby World Cup 2015, taking the women’s game to new levels and properly addressing key issues such as governance and player welfare.
“I am proud of my time at the helm of World Rugby and excited by what lies ahead for our sport, including the debut of rugby sevens at Rio 2016.
“On a personal note I want to say a big thank you to all those who contribute so much to keep the game so alive and well and particularly to all my colleagues who serve World Rugby ‎in many different ways and at every level of the game. I will stay in touch.
“My decision will allow me to stay connected to the game I love while now devoting more time to my role as co-chairman of the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games bid. We are now entering into the heart of the campaign and nothing would give me greater pleasure than bringing the Games back to Paris ‎for a real centenary celebration of Olympism in 2024. I hope to have the honour of being part of a successful bid from my home country, something that would be so special for me personally and for the people of France.”