Owen Farrell’s England hiatus should give all of us pause for thought | Gerard Meagher

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While there may be several factors in the England captain’s decision, the ‘disgusting circus’ around him has clearly played its part

It is a rare thing indeed for Owen Farrell to actively take over from Steve Borthwick when the pair are conducting an England press conference so, when he does, it pays to listen. “You are dealing with people, with human beings. Just because you’re saying stuff on your phone or behind a computer screen doesn’t make it acceptable,” Farrell said in the final week of England’s World Cup campaign, specifically addressing the online abuse Tom Curry to which had been subjected. “It seems to be going more and more this way, and I don’t think it’s acceptable.”

The explanation provided as to why Farrell has made the decision to take a break from international rugby does not extend beyond “prioritising his and his family’s wellbeing” but his words on the eve of his side’s bronze‑medal match against Argentina resonate. It was always to Eddie Jones’s astonishment that Farrell was not held in higher esteem, that England supporters did not feel the love for him, but the hate he has come to receive is beyond the pale.

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Written by Gerard Meagher
This news first appeared on https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2023/nov/29/owen-farrells-england-hiatus-should-give-all-of-us-pause-for-thought under the title “Owen Farrell’s England hiatus should give all of us pause for thought | Gerard Meagher”. Bolchha Nepal is not responsible or affiliated towards the opinion expressed in this news article.