England head coach Eddie Jones reprimanded by the RFU after facing backlash for criticising rugby’s reliance on the private school system that he claims produces ‘closeted’ players who lack ‘resolve’
- Eddie Jones made headlines at the weekend for his comments on public schools
- The England head coach said the private education system should be ‘blown up’
- Sportsmail columnist Sir Clive Woodward condemned the view as ‘divisive’
- Jones has been issued with a stern reprimand from RFU chief Bill Sweeney
- The RFU also highlighted the importance of private schools to the English game
Eddie Jones was rebuked by his RFU bosses on Tuesday for slamming the country’s private school system.
England’s head coach had claimed players educated at fee-paying schools lack resilience and leadership skills, adding that they are ‘closeted’ because of their upbringing.
The Australian suggested the RFU should ‘blow up’ the private school system in comments Sportsmail columnist Sir Clive Woodward said were ‘divisive’ and ‘disrespectful’.
The RFU confirmed on Tuesday that Jones had been issued with a stern reprimand by chief executive Bill Sweeney.
A statement said: ‘RFU CEO Bill Sweeney spoke to Eddie Jones and confirmed the RFU position on the valued role the independent sector plays in the player pathway.’
Eddie Jones claimed that private schools produce ‘closeted’ rugby players who lack ‘resolve’
The RFU confirmed that Jones has been issued with a stern reprimand from chief Bill Sweeney
England’s 2003 World Cup-winning coach Woodward had called on the RFU to dress down Jones for his comments.
Woodward wrote on Tuesday: ‘Jones can say what he likes, but he seemingly has a monopoly on the voice of English rugby.
‘When the RFU just stand by and let it happen, you wonder what on earth is going on. Why does he have the right to belittle the English game?’
Sportsmail columnist Sir Clive Woodward condemned Jones’ comments as ‘disrespectful’
Current England players such as Henry Arundell (L) and Maro Itoje (R) were privately educated
The private-school sector is a conveyor belt of talent for English rugby. Twelve of the 23 players in the squad for England’s last Test against Australia went to fee-paying schools.
‘The RFU is hugely appreciative and supportive of the role both the independent and state school sectors play in introducing boys and girls to our sport,’ the RFU continued.
‘A collaborative approach ensures players are offered opportunities to develop at all schools. We are always working to broaden the accessibility of rugby union to boys and girls from a wide range of backgrounds.’