He is the man who Rugby Australia said had no chance of getting the job.
But 48-year-old Andy Marinos – the head of SANZAAR for the past five years - will lead the batltlng Aussie rugby union, it has been announced.
The Zimbabwean-born Marinos, who played test rugby for Wales, takes over from interim boss Rob Clarke in February.
Back in September, RA chairman Hamish McLennan emphatically ruled Marinos out.
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"He's obviously a really well known rugby identity and highly respected here and around the world but he's not on our shortlist," McLennan said then.
"No one has interviewed Andy and I haven't spoken to him about the CEO search."
Marinos said he was "incredibly humbled" to get the job held by Kiwi Raelene Castle until she resigned under pressure in April.
"I believe that Rugby Australia is uniquely placed for success both domestically and on the global stage," he said.
"We need to hit the ground running…as we look to reignite the game from the bottom up."
Sydney-based Marinos had a very brief league career with the Bulldogs, and played rugby for Natal, Western Province and the Stormers before heading to Wales.