Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Sir Clive Ronald Woodward (born 6 January 1956 at Ely in Cambridgeshire) is a former English rugby union international who was the coach of the England rugby union team from 1997 to 2004. Woodward managed the England side to victory at the 2003 Rugby World Cup.
The son of a RAF pilot, Woodward was sent to HMS Conway School Ship as his father disapproved of his ambition to play professional soccer. At Conway he played rugby union at centre alongside a fly-half Iain Duncan Smith, who would later become leader of the Conservative Party. According to Clive Woodward, he was not selected to play for the Welsh Schoolboys side even though he was good enough and played rugby union for a Welsh school because he was English.
He applied to do a law degree at Durham University but was turned down and instead he got a job in a bank in London.
His first club was Harlequins but he left to go to Loughborough University where he gained a Bachelor of Arts degree in sports science followed by a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE). He then played as a centre for Leicester Tigers from 1979 to 1985. He made his England debut against Ireland on January 19 1980, as a replacement and went on to gain 21 caps for his country, playing his last game March 17 1984 against Wales. He toured South Africa with the British Lions in 1980. He was most noted for his centre partnership with fellow Tiger Paul Dodge. At a time when England played safety first conservative rugby Woodward played a much more expansive game and on occasion made infamous 'howlers'.
In 1985 he transferred office from Xerox in the UK to Xerox in Australia. He continued to play rugby union in his spare time playing for Manly and even trained with the Wallabies. There he learned about Australian rugby which was considered to be at a more advanced developmental stage than that in Britain. Clive, however, came to believe that the Southern hemisphere teams were not invincible and with the right preparation could be beaten.
He returned to the UK in 1990 where he became coach of the then obscure Henley who he got promoted to the national leagues. After a short but successful spell at coaching at London Irish, he became assistant coach at the Tigers' arch enemies Bath under Andy Robinson. When Jack Rowell retired as coach of the England team in 1997, Woodward acquired the job almost by default.
He had the job of transforming the England side from the amateur era into the professional one. He would admit that he made many mistakes in doing so, but attention to detail and gains in experience. Having requested that the critical press judge him on England's performance at the 1999 World Cup when they crashed out to South Africa and Jannie de Beer 's drop goals, his job was questioned. The team developed and subsequently won a Grand Slam in 2003 followed by the 2003 World Cup, beating the reigning champions Australia in the final. He was knighted (KBE) in the 2004 New Year's honours.
He was subsequently hired to manage the 2005 British and Irish Lions to New Zealand .
Woodward's contract with England was due to run until 2007, but following the high profile departure of the stalwarts of his team such as Lawrence Dallaglio and Martin Johnson, and that he was not allowed to spent as much time as he wanted with the England players who also had clubs to play for, Woodward was linked with a possible switch to football (soccer). Initially the rumours of this switch of games was denied, but on September 1 2004, Woodward announced that he would be quitting his job as England coach. In an interview just prior to this, he had said:
- My whole background is in football. I never had that passion for rugby I have for football. I never got into rugby in the same way. I love football and I go to as many games as I possibly can. I was forced into playing rugby, because that's the only game the school played. And I hated it. I ran away a couple of times because of football. I didn't mind being at boarding school. I just hated not playing football
Initially, a move to Southampton Football Club looked likely, as Woodward is known to be friendly with chairman Rupert Lowe. Lowe discussed this possibility with the board on September_2,2004. However, in his resignation press conference, Woodward said that his stated intention is to take the Football Association's Grade Two coaching badges after the 2005 British and Irish Lions tour to New Zealand:
- I have been talking to Rupert Lowe for a long time. He contacted me a couple of years ago, but certainly I'm not involved in anything to do with the first team. I will take no paid position until the Lions tour is over.
- I am 100% committed to the Lions [tour in 2005]. My commitment to them is absolute. I am taking no job from anyone until that is finished.
- I have loved every minute of it, but I will be leaving rugby at end of the Lions tour.
- I'm interested in football, I intend to do the awards but I may end up coaching Maidenhead under-nines. You have to start at the bottom and I intend to do that.
|English national rugby coach|
(Contracted until June 2008)
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