Richard Allcroft has been named as the new president of the International Wheelchair Rugby Federation (IWRF), becoming the first person from outside North America to take on the role.
British official Allcroft will replace John Bishop of the USA as president of the IWRF. Bishop has stepped down from the role after eight years at the helm.
Bishop was the federation’s third president and followed fellow American Brad Mikkelsen and Pawel Zbieranowski of Canada.
Allcroft was elected during the IWRF’s recent General Assembly and Conference in Sydney, Australia, which took place following the 2018 Wheelchair Rugby World Championship.
Allcroft said: “I’ve been involved internationally since about 2010 and I’ve really enjoyed it, just understanding the international landscape, particularly our partnerships with the International Paralympic Committee and World Rugby. We’re at a very exciting time for the sport. You only need to look at the World Championship we’ve just had and the excellent level of competition throughout.”
Bishop added: “Richard has extensive experience in the sport; he’s served in many different roles and has been a board member since 2012. He’s very well-qualified and has lots of great ideas. I feel very comfortable that the IWRF is going to be in fantastic hands going forward.”
Reflecting on his presidency, Bishop continued: “It’s really a team effort between the board, our committees and of course our members across the world. I’m especially proud of the growth and development of our sport. In 2008, the Americas zone was the US and Canada, and today we have six countries in South America that are actively participating internationally and several others nationally. We have new growth in Europe and we’re seeing a lot of growth in the last couple of years in the Asia-Oceania zone, especially in South-East Asia.”