RICHARD Thorpe has returned to Chinnor as their new director of rugby.

The National League 1 side had a vacancy when Matt Williams left for London Scottish last month.

And Thorpe, who spent time at the Thame-based club as player/coach in 2016, stood out in the recruitment process.

Simon Vickers, Chinnor’s chairman, said: “When Richard made contact, we immediately took his approach seriously.

“Richard was extremely well thought-of in his time at the club and shares our reset vision as to how we will move forward in these challenging times and beyond.

“Richard is a professional through-and-through and a great communicator and we know that he will get buy-in from not just the players but the whole of the club.

“Regardless of how much or how little rugby we play next season Richard will be working hard to ensure we are well prepared.”

The 35-year-old played 150 top-flight games during a career with London Irish, Leicester Tigers and London Welsh, while he also played for Canada at the 2015 World Cup.

Thorpe has gone into property investment and performance coaching since retiring from professional rugby, but leapt at the chance for a return to Kingsey Road.

He said: “The moment I became aware of this opportunity I knew that I could make a substantial difference to what is already a successful and well run club to enable it to move to higher levels in all respects.

“Having spoken with Simon and the board I am enthusiastic and impressed by their new vision, which allows me the freedom to inject a new energy, philosophy and culture to deliver it.”