A couple of weeks ago, Prof Alan Bairner and I wrote an analysis of England Rugby’s false and misleading injury rate claims. Here is the link:
I can now report that England Rugby responded. Here is the initial response – with names redacted:
Thank you very much for your email and for bringing this to attention.
The RFU takes player safety extremely seriously. I would like to take the opportunity to respond to your email and to you and Professor Bairner on your editorial (An urgent call for clarity regarding England Rugby’s injury claims).
We acknowledge that an editing error was made in the wording used as part of our Rugby Safe booklet, which was published two years ago. It should have read: There is no evidence to show that rugby poses a specifically greater risk of catastrophic injury than other sports and other activities to align with the graphic used directly after it on page eight (screengrab attached). This was a mistake as part of the publishing process.
We want to ensure all our resources include accurate information, so will be undertaking the following:
- Amending the 2015 Rugby Safe booklet to remove the inaccurate wording with immediate effect (the 2015 document has already been removed from our website)
- Publishing an updated Rugby Safe booklet next season using the latest research and findings
The RFU has apologised to Colin Fuller for the error. It was not our intention to mislead. We will continue our ongoing commitment and work to ensure player welfare is central to all that we do.