26 October 2020

England rugby squad on why diversity is important in the sport

Members of the England rugby squad have been talking about the importance of diversity in the sport.

Saracens’ Maro Itoje said the level in the group is much better now than it was when he was young.

Itoje told Sky Sports: "I remember growing up and watching England play and I didn’t really see too many guys who looked like me play for England.

“I think now more than ever we have a squad that is much more representative of the country that we live in.”

Head coach Eddie Jones added: "Whenever you put together any sort of team or any sort of organisation where you want to achieve you need to have different views because if you’ve just got one view then if that view is wrong you can go down the wrong path.

“And with diversity, diversity of thought, diversity of background, you tend to get different views and then you can get very good debates on where you should go and what’s right.”

Jones said props Ellis Genge and Kyle Sinckler have done a lot for young players who can see they don’t need to have gone to a public school to play for England.

Genge is happy to be viewed as a role model: “I think that’s the most important thing for me, more so from like a financial point of view where it’s typically a middle class, upper class, white man sport.

"Being able to prevail in the sport as a mixed heritage man is good for me especially where I’m from.”

The Six Nations will be concluded this weekend and England are bidding to win the tournament when they take on Italy on Saturday.

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