"Big trouble" - Sir Clive Woodward reveals England cheated during 2003 World Cup - Ruck

“Big trouble” – Sir Clive Woodward reveals England cheated during 2003 World Cup

Former England boss Sir Clive Woodward has revealed he brought in the hotshot lawyer who helped Owen Farrell escape a ban.

The 2003 World Cup winner also revealed the solicitor got his team out of trouble after Woodward made a serious mistake.

“I was ridiculed for bringing Richard Smith KC into the England set-up in 2002. Many said there was no need and that his presence would be a waste of time and money for the RFU,” said Woodward.

“But Richard proved his worth to me instantly on several fronts and was an excellent team player. Two decades on, he is still working brilliantly with English rugby.

“The Farrell situation once again shows the importance of having a good lawyer in your team.

“I’ve no doubt that without Richard in his corner, Farrell would not have got off as lightly as he did. At the 2003 World Cup, we briefly fielded 16 players on the field against Samoa when Dan Luger came on the field by mistake. 


“I thought it was creative coaching but the World Cup disciplinary panel thought otherwise! As an England team, we were in big trouble. 

“It was totally my fault and we could easily have been docked points. Richard helped us get off with a fine and I’ll always owe him a debt of thanks for that given we went on to win the World Cup in Australia that year.

“Farrell also has a big thank you to give him. The reason I hired Richard was because I knew we had a world-class team and staff capable of global glory. But I wanted to safeguard against anything that could possibly derail our bid for success.”


Five most hated rugby players, named and ranked:

We have curated a compilation of individuals who, through their actions on and off the field, have acquired a regrettable reputation within the game. Their notoriety extends beyond specific fan bases or clubs; it encompasses the entire rugby community.

#5. Dan Biggar (Wales)

Amusingly, Biggar epitomizes the kind of player who manages to invoke strong dislike until he becomes a part of your own team.

Over the course of his career, this fly-half has exhibited a growing penchant for passionately berating referees.

This behavior has reached such heights that Glove39, a renowned online personality and unwavering fan of Scotland, cleverly crafted a video titled ‘birdman.’

In this video, Glove39 humorously mimicked Biggar’s habitual arm-raising expression of frustration directed at officials.