Barbarians will feel 'stupid, embarrassed' after quarantine breach, says Clive Woodward

Tanya Simon
October 25, 2020

England were set to face the invitational side as a warm up to their Six Nations finale against Italy on October 31. but the RFU could not guarantee the player's safety after members of the squad breached the bio-bubble rules.

"As part of its ongoing investigation into a breach of the Covid code of conduct that took place on October 21, the RFU has discovered there was an earlier undisclosed breach that took place on October 20 when a number of Barbarians players left the hotel bubble without permission", the governing body said in a statement.

The build-up to Barbarians games is famous for its focus on socialising and the team management installed a team-room in their London base to keep the players entertained.

And former England captain Robshaw appeared to be the centre of attention with the players reportedly partaking in what Rugby Onslaught described as a team bonding session.

A second breach then took place the following night when Robshaw and 11 others dined out in a restaurant, after which five players including Robshaw and his former England team-mate Richard Wigglesworth issued apologies for their behaviour.

"The RFU is therefore left with no alternative but to cancel the game", it said.

England's World Cup-winning coach Sir Clive Woodward has described their conduct as "ridiculously stupid", and the effect of their actions is being felt at Twickenham in the shape of a substantial rebate to Sky Sports, who were due to broadcast the match.

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Woodward, who coached England to World Cup glory in 2003 and has represented the Barbarians, said the guilty players had disappointed all stakeholders with their transgression.

"Although not on club duty whilst with the Barbarians, these players have fallen well short of the high professional standards that are expected at Saracens". It's live on TV, it's a game that everyone was looking forward to.

Sportsmail columnist Sir Clive Woodward also added the rebels should feel stupid and embarrassed as a result of their actions.

"It's called a bubble for that reason".

RFU chief executive Bill Sweeney said he is "incredibly disappointed" but that health comes first, especially with England preparing to play this autumn. "Some players listen, some haven't which makes it even worse in many respects". However, our priority is to protect the health and safety of the England squad and the other global teams they will go up against this autumn.

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