Christopher Robert Andrew
18 February 1963
|Alma mater||St John's College, Cambridge|
|Occupation||Director of Operations|
|Children||Emily, Beth, Iola|
|Height||5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)|
|Rugby union career|
|Domestic team information|
|First-class debut||18 April 1984 |
Cambridge University v Leicestershire
|Last First-class||5 July 1985 |
Cambridge University v Oxford University
|List A debut||5 May 1984 |
Combined Universities v Hampshire
|Last List A||18 May 1985 |
Combined Universities v Essex
Source: CricketArchive, 8 December 2008
Christopher Robert "Rob" Andrew MBE (born 18 February 1963 in Richmond, Yorkshire), nicknamed "Squeaky", is a former English Rugby Union player and was, until April 2016, Professional Rugby Director at the RFU. He was formerly the Director of Rugby of Newcastle Falcons and has been Chief Executive of Sussex County Cricket Club since January 2017.
As a player, Andrew was assured in his kicking and defensive skills off both feet. Andrew also had a brief career in first-class cricket whilst at University and played for Yorkshire County Cricket Club's Second XI.
Andrew attended Barnard Castle School, where he was contemporaries with future teammate Rory Underwood and was captain of the school 1st XV in 1981. Whilst in the north east, both Underwood and Andrew played their rugby at Middlesbrough RUFC. Andrew then attended St John's College, Cambridge and played for Cambridge University in the Varsity Match.
He joined Nottingham for one season in 1985/86 and then joined Wasps FC where he was first choice fly-half throughout most of the eight seasons he spent with the north London club. At Wasps FC he won the English League in 1990, eventually leaving to join Newcastle Gosforth in 1995 as both a player and as director of rugby.
The club had just been bought out by Sir John Hall in the leadup to the game turning professional, they became the Falcons of today. During his time in charge of Newcastle Falcons he is credited with discovering Jonny Wilkinson. He was an ever-present when Newcastle Falcons won the 1997-98 Premiership. His playing career was ended in 1999 after an injury in training.
Andrew was fly-half for England during the Will Carling era, making a winning debut in January 1985 against Romania at Twickenham. For the next 10 years he was England's regular fly-half earning 70 caps, including 2 as captain. He was briefly dropped in 1993 as England tried out Barnes for the fly-half's position, but regained it after two matches. After England finished 4th in the 1995 Rugby World Cup, he saw out his contract at Wasps and moved to the Newcastle Falcons. He made his final appearance for England after an absence of almost 2 years when he was called off the bench as a try scoring replacement against Wales in March 1997. In total, he scored 396 international points, won the Grand Slam with England 3 times and held the English record for the most points scored in an international - 30, scored against Canada in 1994. Critics of the England side blamed him for kicking the ball too much rather than passing - perhaps unfairly since England three times broke the Five Nations records for tries scored, and points scored, with Andrew as fly-half (in 1990 despite not even winning the tournament, and again in 1992 and 1995): however it was undeniable that England's game plan was based very much more around their forwards than their backs, with kicking for territory and competing to win line-outs and rucks in opposition territory being a major part of the tactic. England did, however, enjoy a great deal of success with him as their Number 10. Inconsistent early in his career as a place-kicker for penalties and conversions, and often ceding that duty to fullbacks Webb and Hodgkinson (only to have to take some kicks anyway, when Webb also proved inconsistent early in his own career), Andrew improved that aspect of his game greatly, until by the end of his career he was among the best in the world at it, as well as being a reliable source of drop-goals.
He played in 3 Rugby World Cup competitions; 1987 (making 2 appearances), 1991 and 1995. Curiously, just as Wilkinson had beaten Australia in the 2003 Rugby World Cup final with a drop goal, the last time Australia lost in the same competition was in 1995. In that year, it was Andrew who nailed a drop goal on the stroke of full-time to beat the Wallabies 25-22. Four years before, it was another late drop-goal by Andrew, in the semi-final against Scotland, that took England to the final against Australia.
In 1989 he had the honour of captaining the British and Irish Lions against France in a rare "home" match for the Lions. The game formed part of the celebrations of the bi-centennial of the French Revolution.
Andrew remained as director of rugby at Newcastle Falcons after the injury that ended his playing career until on 18 August 2006 he was appointed by the RFU to undertake the post of Director of Elite Rugby to oversee all aspects of representative rugby in England, from the regional academies to the full senior side.
On 6 January 2011, Andrew's role as director of elite rugby at the Rugby Football Union was scrapped in an overhaul of the organisation's structure. It was reported that Andrew was invited to apply for one of the new roles created by this process, that of operations director. At a press conference on 16 November 2011 Andrew's position was described as Director of Elite Rugby and he reportedly took several attempts to (inconclusively) describe his responsibilities. He resigned as the RFU's director of professional rugby in February 2016.
Andrew was also a talented cricketer, gaining a Cambridge blue for that sport as well, and he made 17 first-class cricket appearances for the university cricket team in 1984 and 1985, as well as playing five times for Combined Universities in one-day cricket. A left-handed batsman and right arm off-break bowler, he made one first-class century, scoring 101 not out against Nottinghamshire in July 1984. Andrew also made a few appearances for the Yorkshire Second XI, and on one occasion dismissed future England captain Mike Atherton (then aged 17) for a duck.
Andrew is an Honorary President of the rugby charity Wooden Spoon, which raises funds for disadvantaged children and young people in the UK and Ireland.
| English National Rugby Union Captain
| English National Rugby Union Captain