Troy Grant, the former New South Wales deputy premier, has been appointed as the new chair of International Rugby League (IRL) and reckons he's honoured to be taking the reins of the global sport in World Cup year.
The 51-year-old Grant, currently an independent director and deputy chair of the IRL, replaces New Zealander Greg Barclay, who's stood down after his recent appointment as chairman of the International Cricket Council (ICC).
"I feel very proud and privileged, especially as we look forward to the unique excitement of the World Cup later in the year," Grant said on Tuesday.
"I have a lifetime involvement in the sport, and I am extremely ambitious for the sport globally."
Rugby League has been a central part of his life ever since Grant, who enjoyed a 30-year career in New South Wales politics, started out as a ball-boy and player.
He's been a junior coach, referee and league administrator while his maternal great grandfather played in the early 1900s in the Newcastle region as did his maternal grandfather and father as a schoolboy.
Grant, who was appointed as an independent director of IRL in February 2020, has recently taken a leading role in the game's response to the COVID pandemic.