FORMER Scotland women’s football team captain Gemma Fay has been appointed as Scottish Rugby’s new Head of Women and Girls’ rugby.
Fay, who won 200 caps as goalkeeper in a 19-year career, joins from sportscotland where she has been working as a Partnerships Manager with different governing bodies since 2009. She will report to Stephen Gemmell, who is Scottish Rugby’s Head of Academy and Performance Programmes, which suggests that the priority going forward is going to be developing the women’s game at the elite level.
“There has been a lot of progress across the women and girls game in the past couple of years and it is vital we now build on that momentum, both at grassroots level right through to the national team to put a sustainable and robust programme in place,” said Gemmell.
“Gemma has a great range of experience to bring to Scottish Rugby and this role will give her a real opportunity to put that into practice.”
Fay takes on the role previously held by Sheila Begbie, who was promoted by Scottish Rugby in September to become the new Director of Domestic Rugby. Begbie was also recruited from a football background, joining the SRU from the equivalent role in the SFA in May 2014.
“I am delighted to be joining Scottish Rugby at such an exciting time in the development of the women’s game in Scotland. After speaking at length with [SRU Director of Rugby] Scott Johnson I felt like this would be a perfect opportunity to use the skills I have developed as a professional in the sports industry for the past 14 years, in addition to my 20 years as an international athlete,” said Fay.
Johnson said: “We are very excited about bringing Gemma to Scottish Rugby. Not only has she had a significant career in elite sport at an international level, but Gemma has also worked with different sports and understands what it takes to build and deliver the type of programme we want to achieve for women and girls in Scotland.”