Former Olympic chief to join Town

IPSWICH Town are lining up former British Olympic Association chief executive Simon Clegg for a prominent role at Portman Road.

Derek Davis

IPSWICH Town are lining up former British Olympic Association chief executive Simon Clegg for a prominent role at Portman Road.

Owner Marcus Evans has been in talks with 49-year-old Clegg about becoming a senior figure at the club with a salary package of around �250,000.

It is understood Clegg would join Ipswich Town before the summer once everything has been finalised, although it may not be until the end of the current football season.

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Former army major Clegg is expected to be a public face of Ipswich Town, given Mr Evans' desire for privacy, and to help in planning the future strategy of the club.

Capturing Clegg is a coup for the Blues as he is a highly regarded figure in sports administration.

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He stepped down from the BOA last December after overseeing the British team at 12 Olympic Games, six as chef de mission (basically the team leader) including the hugely successful Beijing team that finished fourth in the medal table with an unprecedented 47 medals, 19 gold, 13 silver and 15 bronze.

A former member of the 7th Parachute regiment, he joined the army as a private and rose to the rank of major. Clegg missed out on the chance to represent his country at the Sarajevo Olympics due to operational priorities and was a member of the UK's rapid reaction force.

He managed the British biathlon team before joining the BOA in 1989 as assistant general secretary after being the Olympic team's quartermaster.

Clegg rose to become the BOA's first chief executive in 1997 but was replaced by current CEO Andy Hunt at the behest of the association chairman Lord Moynihan last year.

He was awarded an OBE in 2000 after the Sydney Games, an MBE in 2006 after being part of the successful 2012 London bid committee and is widely-tipped to receive a knighthood in the next Queen's Birthday Honours list.

Despite leaving the association Clegg is likely to continue advising the 2012 Olympic committee.

Olympian Sir Steve Redgrave, who won five rowing gold medals during Clegg's tenure, described him as a visionary and outstanding man-manager.

When Clegg's departure from the BOA was announced vice-president Redgrave said: "Simon's vision, understanding and attention to detail have consistently provided Team GB athletes with a real competitive advantage at the Olympic Games.

"I've known him for over 20 years and I know that I speak for many athletes, both medalists and non-medalists, when I say that his support, encouragement and athlete-focused management style will be difficult to replace.

“He has played an important part in our lives and we are sure that he will go on to achieve future success in whatever path he chooses.”

Clegg is married to Hilary and has two children, Lucy and Toby, and is understood to have already been house-hunting in East Anglia to where he will move from Surrey.

And the dedicated skier, and occasional golfer, already has links with the area as he is a listed supporter of SnOasis.

Ipswich Town last night declined to make any comment.

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