The Rugby World Defends Cipriani & Henson Following Times Piece


Times journalist Matthew Syed has copped an enormous amount of flack after writing a piece, criticising both Gavin Henson and Danny Cipriani for not fulfilling their potential due to their ‘arrogance.’

In a piece titled “Why Jonny Wilkinson realised his potential and Danny Cipriani didn’t”, the outspoken journalist provides a scathing assessment of both players, citing their “arrogance when practising; self-doubt when executing,” for their failure to reach the heights expected of them.

Syed wrote:

Instead of continuous improvement, which can be driven only by a realistic appraisal of one’s weaknesses, they had lifestyles of continuous self-gratification. This undermined their ability to perform for club and country, creating self-doubt at the very moment they needed self-assurance. Their problem was not a lack of talent. Their problem is that — like so many other athletes who failed to live up to expectation — they applied swagger to the wrong part of the cycle.
Arrogance when practising; self-doubt when executing.

A number of coaches, players and journalists have come out in unison to defend both players.

Danny Cipriani himself has also responded to the piece.

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