Clive Woodward hopes Steve Borthwick era ends “awful rhetoric” under Eddie Jones

612     0
Clive Woodward has again taken aim at Eddie Jones (Image: PA)
Clive Woodward has again taken aim at Eddie Jones (Image: PA)

Sir Clive Woodward has continued to fire shots at Eddie Jones, now calling for new England coach Steve Borthwick to end the "awful rhetoric" of his predecessor.

Jones, 62, was sacked by the RFU in December after seven years in charge. His reign included a run to the 2019 World Cup final, where his side were beaten by South Africa, and three Six Nations titles.

But England endured a miserable Autumn campaign last year, losing to both Argentina and the Springboks, whilst a dramatic late fightback salvaged a draw with New Zealand. And relations between Jones and his bosses were already strained, after he slammed the country's public school system for having a negative impact on the international pathway.

Woodward, who famously guided England to a 2003 World Cup win, has seemingly been at odds with Jones ever since that tournament down under. His rival was in charge of the Wallabies when the Red Roses beat them in extra time in the final.

And he has consistently sniped at Jones during his England tenure, calling for RFU bosses to stand up to him and vehemently criticising him for "unfulfilled promises." He's now taken aim again, whilst urging Borthwick to make some major changes.

England star Joe Marler reflects on lowest point after fight with pregnant wife eridzriquhikeinvEngland star Joe Marler reflects on lowest point after fight with pregnant wife

"It will be a big change to the Eddie Jones era, where all the focus was on the coach and not the team," he wrote in his column. "I hope the Borthwick era will bring an end to the awful rhetoric that came to symbolise English rugby under Jones. If I had one wish for 2023, it would be to ban the terms ‘starters’ and ‘finishers’."

Clive Woodward hopes Steve Borthwick era ends “awful rhetoric” under Eddie JonesSteve Borthwick is the new England head coach and has been handed advice by Woodward (David Rogers/Getty Images)

Throughout his time in charge, Jones wasn't prepared to use the term 'replacements', insinuating that coming off the bench was now a specific role for players who could make a second half impact. He used the term when praising his side for coming back from 25-6 down to tie that match with the All Blacks in November.

Borthwick, who actually worked alongside Jones as England forwards coach for four years, has already fulfilled one of Woodward's wishes. The 43-year-old has employed former rugby league star Kevin Sinfield as defence coach.

Twickenham bosses met Leicester’s £1million compensation demand for the pair, who led Tigers to the English Premiership title in the 2021/22 campaign. Their first match in charge will be the opening Six Nations game at home to Scotland on February 4.

Fraser Watson

Print page

Comments:

comments powered by Disqus