Colin Grassie is to stand down as chairman of the board of Scottish Rugby at August’s AGM.

The timing is surprising given that we are in the middle of a global crisis, and that it was announced last year that he would stay in the role until the summer of 2021, but the former Deutsche Bank executive (right) has come under increasing pressure and scrutiny during the last two years during one of the most tumultuous periods in the game’s history.

He was in charge of the clean-up operation after the Union lost an unfair dismissal case brought by former director of domestic rugby Keith Russell and came in for some heavy criticism for the lack of detail published from the subsequent internal review on the matter.

More recently, the executive pay scandal, and Grassie’s role in the management and governance review conducted by Sir Bill Gammell and Norman Murray, have caused significant unease amongst member clubs.

“I have been immensely proud to hold the position of Chairman over the past three years and I’d like to thank each and every Board member I have had the pleasure of working with for their support and guidance,” said Grassie.

“I intend to give the essential work now underway during the Covid-19 crisis my complete focus and full attention until such time as we can bring our member clubs together for our next AGM.”

In a wide-ranging update issued yesterday lunchtime, the SRU Board also stressed that they are investigating ways to ensure that the AGM goes ahead as scheduled on 15th August.