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The Rugby Union Daily is back from 30th January to get you ready for the Six Nations! So for the last Weekly episode Ugo, Danny, Chris and Sara meet up to discuss a controversial week in the sport. Top of the agenda is the RFU's new tackle laws. Will lowering the tackle height to the waist make the game safer? Plenty of players, coaches and referees have criticised the decision. The England cricket captain even got involved in the debate. We also hear about Danny's encounter with Siya Kolisi in the tunnel and we look forward to the last 16 of the Champions Cup.
Ugo and Chris are at Twickenham to chat to Steve Borthwick about his 36-man squad for the Six Nations, but has the news been overshadowed somewhat by his predecessor? They quiz Borthwick on the decision to name Owen Farrell captain and the controversy around his ban. Plus, Borthwick tells us about the difficult conversations he had with those players who missed out on selection. Kevin Sinfield also stops by for a chat about who his defensive leaders will be, tackle technique and how proud he'll be to coach England at Twickenham for the first time. And we discuss a sensational return to the Wallabies for Eddie Jones. Will he come back to haunt his previous employer at the World Cup? There's also a look back at the weekend's Champions Cup action which included big wins for Ospreys and Edinburgh.
Ugo, Ashy and Danny discuss Nick Evans being named England's attack coach for the Six Nations and whether he can revive their attack in time for the Calcutta Cup at Twickenham. They also discuss Owen Farrell's tackle on Jack Clement, whether rugby should have a January transfer window and Ashy reveals the one Premiership club he's yet to score a try against.
Chris takes the pod to University of Gloucestershire to sit down with England's new defence coach Kevin Sinfield. They talk about his relationship with Steve Borthwick, what he's looking to bring to the role and how coaching is more rewarding than playing. Sinfield also talks about his good friend Rob Burrow and the work he has done to raise money and awareness for motor neurone disease (MND). They also discuss rugby league, his song choices on Desert Island Discs and his first meeting with the England players this week.
Sale director of rugby Alex Sanderson is our special guest to kick off the new year. He chats to Ugo and Sara about life at Sale, their big win over champions Leicester and the impact George Ford is having behind the scenes. We also discuss Joe Marler's ban, another eye-catching display from Owen Farrell at fly-half, and a stunning last-minute penalty from Santiago Carreras.
Chris and Paul Grayson pod from Welford Road after Leicester beat Gloucester in the inaugural Slater Cup. They chat to Tigers' new interim head coach Richard Wigglesworth after his first victory and discuss an eventful December for the defending champions. They also reflect on an emotional day for Ed Slater and his family and take stock of the Premiership season so far.
England's new head coach Steve Borthwick is our special guest on the pod this week. He tells Chris how much it means to lead his country and what fans can expect from his England team in their Six Nations opener against Scotland. We also hear from RFU chief executive Bill Sweeney on why Borthwick was always first choice for the job, and why Eddie Jones was sacked nine months before the World Cup. Ashy reveals how Borthwick and Kevin Sinfield broke the news to the Leicester Tigers squad at the weekend, and Danny talks gameplans and whether England can win the World Cup next year in France.
Borthwick or bust?

Borthwick or bust?


Chris and Ugo quiz Ashy about the mood in the Leicester camp with Steve Borthwick the frontrunner to become the new England head coach. Could this lead to a shock England recall for Ashy at 35? They discuss the opening weekend of the new-look Champions Cup which was up against bad weather, train strikes and England's World Cup quarter-final. Is the current format working or will it change again further down the line? And Premiership referee Christophe Ridley's tweet to Gary Neville sparks a debate about the importance of the relationship between players and referees.
Reviewing the reviews

Reviewing the reviews


After underwhelming autumn campaigns for England and Wales, the inquests by the RFU and WRU are already under way. Danny, Ugo and Chris are on the sofa to discuss whether we will see big changes with the World Cup now just under 10 months away. Is this the end of the road for Eddie Jones and England? Or will he be given the chance to get the England fans back on side? These are also uncertain times for Wayne Pivac after a disappointing year for Wales. Could Warren Gatland make a sensational return to Wales or could we see another Kiwi take charge?
Chris and Paul Grayson pick the bones out of England's defeat to South Africa at Twickenham. Is progress being made ahead of the World Cup next year? Will the RFU stick with Eddie Jones after just one win in four matches this autumn. Wales also ended their autumn with defeat after surrendering a 21 point lead against Australia.
Chris Jones, Andy Nicol and Paul Grayson pay tribute to one of the greats of Scottish rugby, Doddie Weir, who’s died at the age of 52 following his battle with motor neurone disease. Andy and Paul remember him as a team-mate and a friend and they hear from the man himself, in a 2019 interview with 5 Live’s Darren Campbell.
A must-win for all sides

A must-win for all sides


Ugo and Chris look ahead to the final two games of the Autumn Nations Series. Pod favourite Jamie George is back to discuss referees, injury comebacks and another duel with South Africa. Eddie Jones talks us through his team selection as he tinkers his line-up once again. And after one of the worst defeats in Welsh rugby history last weekend, can Wayne Pivac and Wales end the year on a high against an injury-ravaged Australia?
We have a big pod from Monaco to finish our run of daily podcasts. Chris and Ugo are in Monaco to speak to men’s Player of the Year Josh van der Flier and New Zealand fly-half Ruahei Demant who took home the women’s prize. They also catch up with Ireland head coach Andy Farrell after a stellar 2022 for Ireland. There are also interviews with Jamie Roberts on Georgia’s shock victory over Wales and World Rugby CEO Alan Gilpin on the state of the international game. Plus, Springboks legend John Smit talks Rassie Erasmus and England against South Africa this weekend.
Chris and Danny gather their thoughts after the game at Twickenham, where England snatched a late draw against New Zealand - gifting fans one of the most dramatic ten minutes of rugby in recent memory! Up until the 70th minute England's defeat to the All Blacks looked certain, but Eddie Jones’ men scored 3 tries to bring the score level. Chris and Danny scratch their heads and ask why England didn’t start the way they finished? Are we still asking, will the real England please stand up? Which of the two teams will most feel that they lost that one? All this plus reaction to the other matches on Saturday afternoon, when Georgia beat Wales at home for the first time ever and a card-fest at Murrayfield saw Scotland making their own history with a record win over Argentina.
Chris Jones, Matt Dawson and Sonja McLaughlan pod from Pennyhill Park ahead of England's clash with New Zealand this weekend. We hear from Eddie Jones on Ardie Savea, the changes to his back-row and his take on the state of the international game less than a year out from World Cup. Matt heaps praise on Jack van Poortvliet after he was given the nod ahead of Ben Youngs at scrum-half. There's more chat on the Farrell-Smith combination and who has had the better 2022, Ireland or France?
A special podcast all about Owen Farrell who is set to win his 100th England cap this weekend against the All Blacks. Danny tells about us his first England encounter with Farrell and why he still doesn't get the credit he deserves. England team mates Henry Slade and Jonny Hill give us an insight into Farrell on the training field and how he continues to drive standards. We find out how Farrell is viewed in New Zealand with All Blacks scrum-half Aaron Smith and Liam Napier from the NZ Herald. Chris and Danny ask whether the best is still to come for Farrell and Danny backs him to become England head coach one day.
Danny, Ugo and Chris are back together to discuss the nominees for the World Rugby Awards. Should Ardie Savea have made the shortlist for the Men's Player of the year? Who will be crowned Coach of the Year? The debate around the next England head coach has resurfaced after the RFU chief executive Bill Sweeney said Eddie Jones' successor doesn't need to be English. So who would be the ideal candidate? And will Shaun Edwards ever join the England coaching set-up? They also assess what we've learnt from the autumns so far and look forward to the All Blacks visiting Twickenham.
After battling through countless tech issues John Barclay eventually makes his debut as a co-presenter alongside Chris. They discuss the positives for Scotland despite their defeat to the All Blacks, Finn Russell's performance and where this leaves his Scotland career. There is also a look at some more social media antics from Rassie Erasmus and John educates Chris on a Scottish delicacy.
Sara pods from Auckland for one last time before heading back home. She is joined by World Cup winner Kat Merchant and Becky Grey from the BBC Sport website to reflect on the final and how successful the tournament has been. Sara also speaks a very emotional Simon Middleton and the RFU chief executive Bill Sweeney.
Sara Orchard and Kat Merchant take a breath after the Black Ferns edged another win over the Red Roses in a breathless world cup final full of drama and skill. They react to the early red card which meant that England had a mountain to climb, and how despite keeping a hold of New Zealand for most of the game, heartbreak eventually befell the tourists with the final score 34-31. As well as hearing from New Zealand’s Ruby Tui, England’s captain Sarah Hunter and head coach Simon Middleton, we also catch up with Chris Jones, Ugo Monye and Giselle Mather who joined fans at Twickenham to watch the game early doors. Sara and Kat reflect on what has been an incredible day for women’s rugby, and what the future looks like for players and coaches in both hemispheres.
Comments (26)

John P

very annoyed by ugo's blinkered views re. tackle height. This is not wanted or needed by the majority of the playing public. what makes you think you know better than those playing in the community that will be impacted by this change, or worse still the many that won't be impacted as they will walk away from the game. the science is agenda driven and patchy at best. Rugby is a contact sport, there's risk, players know this and still choose to play as do fighters in mma or boxing, as do jockeys in horse riding. People should be allowed to make their own decisions. Ugo you are entitled to your views, but give those who are impacted the same respect to air their's. This is a wrong decision that needs to be cancelled before it causes further harm to our already damaged sport

Jan 25th

Alex Wenz

Some serious English bias in the last few pods 30+ mins of England 15 mins for the other 3 nations. Disappointing

Jul 12th

Tim Simpson


Jun 15th

David McEvoy

Armadillo? 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

Feb 10th

Ross Edwards

Amazing thanks thanks Ugo & Jonesy!

Nov 18th

e-n M

what is wrong with your podcast at the moment? impossible to download...can only listen live, no download, and on the go listening possible. disappointing :(

Aug 8th

Peter peter

Grow a spine, Eddie Jones and take some responsibility for your terrible decisions.

Apr 1st

Peter peter

English pod for England fans.

Mar 16th

Peter peter

Dump Chris Jones and I'll listen more regularly.

Feb 23rd

Peter peter

As a Welshman I'VE called 5 from 6!! I shouldn't have backed Italy this weekend. Any jobs going boys?

Feb 16th

Thomas Good

wait what? nobody comments on these?!?! think ive just found my in with the glamorous trio of jonesy, uges and danny boy!

Feb 12th

Konrad Höije

Horrible to hear Hugo complaining about being black compared to being disabled. The context was pupils being tolerant towards people being different. I think Hugo should apologise and seriously consider his views on disabled people. Konrad

Dec 4th

Warren Daly

Wagon circling on this tackle. Poor show from Ugo and DC

Sep 8th

Russ Abbott

On your mention of the dreaded global rugby calender here are some thoughts Midweek games are ok but unlike some members of the panel, some of us half to work until 4.00pm +. So the alternatives for me are take holidays or try to rush the ground through Leicesters rush hour traffic. The whole summer rugby debate is creating a north south divide on another podcast a rfu spokesman stated that the semis and semi finals would be held in July allowing people still to go on holiday in Aug. The midlands and above start there school holidays at the beginning of July, as well as the whitsun break. This would make fans have to miss the business end of the season. Many fans I have spoken to have said there would be no point in having a season ticket as they would miss something like 4 games. Im really really hoping rugby stays a winter game

Sep 7th

Andrew Wilson

The story of the burger bar queue is certainly amusing 🍔🍟🤣!

Jun 23rd

Sandcastle •

Diversify the game? Thought rugby was meant to be a sport, a competition between people. Didnt realise that skin colour was so important, so long as you have the right skin colour, good forbid anyone ask for more white rugby players, white people are evil. But hey, when most pro rugby teams are made up of Fijians, Samoans, Welsh, English, South Africans, Americans, canadians, Japanese, kiwi's or Australians, you'd have thought diversity was already a thing. But no, let's make this all about skin colour. Because the melanin content of your skin is so important, what, don't believe me? Just ask apartheid South Africa, they will tell you how important skin colour is.

Jun 17th
Reply (1)

Tom Nam

why do your podcasts never work when posted on Mondays?

Mar 9th

J Coker

my God. real interogation. well done bbc

Jan 28th

Tony McConnochie

Loved this Podumentary and would love to see them done for other countries. Great work guys.

Oct 17th

Ross Edwards

ABs Podumentary was amazing. PLEASE more like this on other passionate rugby countries Wales!)

Oct 17th
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