English RFU say there’ll be ‘no hasty reaction’ to RWC exit

‘Lessons will be learnt - and they’ll be found in a calm, clear, rational manner’

The Rugby Football Union has ruled out any "hasty reaction" after England were knocked out of the World Cup by a 33-13 defeat to Australia at Twickenham.

England's tournament has lasted a mere 16 days after they became the first host nation to fail to reach the knockout stage, placing the future of head coach Stuart Lancaster and his assistants Andy Farrell, Graham Rowntree and Mike Catt in doubt.

But chief executive Ian Ritchie said on englandrugby.com: "I would like to stress there will be no hasty reaction to England's performance in this World Cup."

Ritchie added: “Both as RFU chief executive and as a lifetime supporter of the England team I speak for so many by saying how disappointed we are at the losses to Wales and Australia, where hopes were so high that we could achieve something special.

“Lessons will be learnt from the results and they will be found in a calm, clear, rational and thorough manner in the fullness of time post tournament.

“Developing professional teams capable of securing international success has always been, and continues to be, a key imperative in the RFU’s Strategic Plan. In the short term, however, the England team has a game to prepare for against Uruguay and everyone will give them their full support.”

RFU chairman Bill Beaumont extended his sympathy to the players, who he believed would have been shattered by this early exit.

“This is a group of young men who care deeply about representing their nation and their fans. Nobody will be hurting more than they are and, while they will expect an inevitable reaction, knowing that the rugby family is still there for them will really matter,” he told englandrugby.com.

Lancaster and Ritchie addressed the media at a 10am briefing at the team’s Pennyhill Park base in Surrey.

Speaking prior to the press conference, Ritchie said his focus now is on ensuring the World Cup continues to be an operational success, albeit now without the host team playing any further meaningful part.

“This is set to be the biggest world tournament to date, over a million people have so far seen games live, and I have no doubt that our investment of time and resources in creating a lasting legacy will see a step change in rugby enjoyment and participation across the country.”