Scrum-half Ben Youngs says Leicester Tigers’ bar brawl in Portugal should serve a timely reminder for players to behave at the World Cup.
England’s senior players will have a ‘self-policing’ group in Japan to avoid a repeat of the calamitous 2011 campaign.
Youngs was a member of the 2011 squad in New Zealand, where players were spotted dwarf-throwing and Manu Tuilagi jumped into Auckland harbour.
Ben Youngs says Leicester Tigers’ bar brawl in Portugal should serve a timely reminder
‘We’ve addressed the elephant in the room and spoken about how off field stuff can bring unneeded attention that affects momentum,’ said Youngs.
‘You’ve just got to be smart adults. You’re representing the country and you’re representing each other. What you do has a knock on effect on your team-mates and I feel this group is mature enough to make the right decisions. Hopefully we won’t face any of those issues.
‘Sometimes guys will get it wrong but in this group I think guys will look out for each other. We want to see Japan and have down time. If guys want to have a drink, that’s not a problem.
‘The guys will police each other and make sure everyone makes the right decision. If you’re putting the team first then that’s the main thing. I’ll be surprised if boys want to have a drink.
‘I was part of 2011 but young guys saw that and know the effects it can have. I don’t need to patronise them.’