Rugby legend Maggie Alphonsi has responded to the news that the RFU will not be extending the England Women’s contracts even if they win next months Rugby World Cup.
“Back in 2014 the England women’s rugby union side that I was lucky enough to be a part of also enjoyed good backing and we won a World Cup, too.” wrote Alphonsi for the Guardian.
“After the 2014 World Cup the focus went on to the Sevens side – as is happening now – with players switching away from the XVs game
“That had a knock-on effect on the XVs team, and they finished fourth in the following year’s Six Nations,
“Since the Rio Olympics the players have come back to the XVs programme and we have again enjoyed excellent success, winning the Grand Slam again this year.
“At the moment we are asking players to sustain a living as well as producing top-class rugby performances in their spare time, and that is a really big ask.
“To ask someone to go back to work and fulfil the requirements of being a rugby player as well as maintaining a job is very difficult to do.
“I would personally rather there was continued support for both, with some players able to concentrate on both formats.
“I don’t have an answer going forward. I just hope there is more investment in the future – and that the team show what they’re made of in Ireland next month.”