Eddie Jones usually comes across as a pretty intelligent guy.
He likes to be edgy and controversial in his media interviews sometimes and certainly isn’t afraid to use them as an opportunity for a bit of mind games with an opposite number.
But he really let himself down with his comments about Emma Raducanu – on so many levels.
By all means put out a public message to English rugby’s bright young thing, Marcus Smith, about the dangers of being distracted from his day job.
Maybe he’s seen signs that he needs to keep his feet on the ground or he just wants to put down a marker. Who knows.
But it was so needless to drag Emma into it.
And if you are going to do that, at least make sure you check your facts first.
“There’s a reason why the young girl who won the US Open hasn’t done so well afterwards” is such an ignorant and lazy thing to say.
And not mentioning Emma by name is wrong as well, by the way.
He dug himself an even deeper hole when he went further.
— Emma Raducanu (@EmmaRaducanu) September 29, 2021
“What have you seen her on – the front page of Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar or whatever it is, wearing Christian Dior clothes. All that is a distraction around her.”
It subsequently turns out that the Vogue photoshoot took place long before the US Open so it obviously wasn’t that much of a distraction!
Anyway, the point he made is a weak one.
Maybe it has some validity with a rugby player he will know well but there’s no way he can be informed about the life of a tennis player he can’t even remember the name of.
If you get peaks in your career like Emma has just enjoyed there is nothing wrong with taking a few weeks to experience the benefits of it.
Like it or not, her profile and capitalising on it, is part of her job.
And the US Open was the last grand slam of the season so the timing worked perfectly to enjoy the moment.
— British Vogue (@BritishVogue) September 29, 2021
Doing the odd magazine photoshoot isn’t exactly going wild and I’ve read or heard nothing to suggest Emma has been adversely affected by the overnight fame that has come her way.
For Eddie Jones to infer otherwise was totally out of order.
Ideally we’d have loved to have been out in Canada competing in last week’s Grand Slam event but for preparation going into the European Championships you can’t ask for much more than the European Tour win we achieved in Estonia.
There was so many positives.
We went through the tournament unbeaten and, although the likes of Team Hasselborg weren’t there, there were others who have already secured their place for the Olympics, will be up against us in the qualifying competition in a few weeks and will be at the Euros.
Champions in Tallinn, Estonia! 🏆🥇 pic.twitter.com/a2qR1JkvRg
— Team Muirhead (@Team_Muirhead) November 7, 2021
Also, I was able to take a couple of games off so we all got time on the ice and Vicky got the chance to skip.
You can’t buy the confidence you get from winning as a new team and it’s now just a case of working on a few things before we fly out to Lillehammer on Wednesday.