Sir Clive Woodward has joined the debate over England’s controversial anthem ‘Swing Low, Sweet Chariot’.
The RFU have launched a review into the ‘historical context’ of the song – which is regularly belted out by England supporters and has its lyrics written on the walls at Twickenham.
Writing in his column for the Mail Online, Woodward wrote: “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot’s place in English rugby has never sat well with me.
“In rugby today, it has drunken, beery connotations accompanied by leery hand gestures — and the song has a complex history in the fight against racism.
“Swing Low, Sweet Chariot’s place in English rugby has never sat well with me. In rugby today, it has drunken, beery connotations accompanied by leery hand gestures — and the song has a complex history in the fight against racism.”
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He added: “I do not think anyone is singing it with racist intent but the current perception of the song is complicated and its racial overtones are highlighted, despite its links to the Civil Rights Movement.
“The outcry that banning Swing Low, Sweet Chariot is an example of ‘political correctness gone mad’ misses the point.
“It is about showing solidarity and committing to bettering the game and society.”
LIST | 9 of the Biggest Transfers That Never Happened
1. David Pocock to Wasps
Hot on the heels of landing fly half Danny Cipriani for next season, Wasps reportedly made an audacious attempt to bring David Pocock to the Premiership in a potential deal that would make the Australia flanker the highest paid rugby player in the world. According to The Telegraph, they would offer him a package in excess of the £1.4 million. This would have been one of the biggest transfers ever.
2. Jonny Wilkinson to Lyon
French Top 14 club Lyon reportedly sounded out England rugby legend Jonny Wilkinson over a potential short-term move back in 2015. Despite reports that Lyon was set to offer the World Cup winning fly-half a deal that would have made him one of the league’s top earners, the former Toulon playmaker ‘politely refused’ the offer. Would have been great to see him do his stuff one more time.