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Australian Rugby Coach Eddie Jones Accused Of Making 'Sexist' Comments About Emma Raducanu

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Australian Rugby Coach Eddie Jones Accused Of Making 'Sexist' Comments About Emma Raducanu

Eddie Jones has come under fire for his comments regarding tennis sensation Emma Raducanu with some people now calling the England rugby coach "sexist".

The Aussie made the remarks when discussing English rugby's hottest prospect Marcus Smith.

Eddie Jones. Credit: PA
Eddie Jones. Credit: PA

After bursting onto the scene by guiding Harlequins to a Premiership victory, 22-year-old Smith was advised by his national team coach to avoid any off-field distractions and focus solely on rugby.

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But in making his point, Jones decided it'd be appropriate to make a comparison with another rising sports star in US Open winner Raducanu - a statement which has now backfired massively.

"There's a reason why the young girl who won the US Open hasn't done so well afterwards," Jones said.

"What have you seen her on - the front page of Vogue and Harper's Bazaar or whatever, wearing Christian Dior clothes."

Emma Raducanu. Credit: PA
Emma Raducanu. Credit: PA
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Raducanu was catapulted into the spotlight after her historic US Open victory as a wildcard entry and has only lost two matches since.

The comments instantly landed Jones in hot water as fans piled into him on social media.

One person who didn't take too kindly to Jones' remarks was former world No.5 and fellow Brit Jo Durie.

"No-one ever complains about blokes going to galas - it's always something that is thrown at women," Durie told The Telegraph.

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"Emma isn't a girl. She's an 18-year-old woman. Unfortunately, when you're this famous, everybody likes to have their opinion about you.

"I don't know her well myself but she seems to have a good head on her shoulders.

"She just needs to play for at least a season and get used to life on the Tour before anyone expects anything else from her."

Credit: PA
Credit: PA
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Former Olympic gold-medallist hockey player Kate Richardson-Walsh also slammed Jones.

She said: "It's certainly important for everyone to think about distractions... It's also really important not to be an ill-informed, patronising, hypocritical misogynist."

Respected TV presenter Gabby Logan had her say on the matter too, adding: "Unbelievably unfair and not even remotely comparable.

"She is 18 in her first six months of being pro.

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"She made the second week of Wimbledon and won the US Open having never played on the Tour.

"Imagine an 18-year-old rugby player winning a World Cup having never played a club game.

"My point was two Tour defeats after winning a Major does not make a catastrophe. Nor having endorsements equals inevitable career decline.

"Cristiano Ronaldo, Serena Williams and many more have done okay on both commercial and sporting fronts."

But while some flocked to social media to chime in, others weren't onboard with the notion that Jones' comments were in any way sexist - former England rugby player James Haskell being one of them.

Haskell leapt to the defence of his former coach, saying: "Honestly how you think this is sexist is beyond me.

"It's a point about distraction and the pitfalls of fame; that can happen to anyone. I can see you desperately want to incite the cancel mob, but you are going to need to do better than that.

"Where is the sexism? You are just saying it to insight a riot.

"You and I both know you said that so everyone would jump in.

"She is the most relevant example of a current athlete. Gender is not relevant. It's OK to say you overreacted because you felt passionate."

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Rugby, Emma Raducanu, Rugby Union, Australia

Max Sherry
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