Embattled sports retailer JJB Sports is understood to have appointed former La Senza commercial director Beverley Williams as interim chief executive following the sudden departure of Keith Jones on Friday.

Williams, who left the lingerie retailer at the start of the year, is expected to join the troubled sportswear chain within weeks, according to Sky News.

It is thought JJB could announce the new hire as early as today.

The appointment of Williams - who was placed by Barracuda Interim - follows the exit of Jones as chief executive last week after a number of profit warnings and a call for urgent fundraising during his tenure.

Jones, who had been in charge since March 2010, will stay on at the retailer in an advisory capacity until the end of August.

The retailer has seen sales plummet in recent years and has undertaken two company voluntary arrangements to shed hundreds of stores.