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Spying is still an issue

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Spying still a reality in rugby union

Eddie Jones has admitted spying on the opposition still happens in rugby union and will be taking measures to ensure the opposition do not watch his training sessions during the Six Nations or Rugby World Cup in Japan.

Jones believes the increasing coverage of rugby worldwide has negated the need to send spies to try and watch the opposition train but is aware of the continuing danger and said: “I am sure it does go on now and then. You have to make sure you take precautions to minimise the risk of that happening and we will certainly do that. “

Sir Clive Woodward went to extraordinary lengths to keep his training ground runs secret during the successful 2003 World Cup campaign and while he was in charge of the 2005 British and Irish Lions.

The subject of sports team spying on each other has hit the headlines thanks to Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa. The EFL has launched a formal investigation after Bielsa admitted before Friday night’s 2-0 win over Derby that he was responsible for sending a member of club staff to watch them training on Thursday. Derbyshire Police were forced to intervene and move the individual on but he was not arrested.

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England have security posted around their Pennyhill Park training pitch and only part of their training session is open to media viewing to limit the amount of footage being taken of the players.

Jones told Sky: “Around 20 years ago it(spying) was quite common when there wasn’t much vision around so you used to send coaches out to have a look at the opposition and put them with hats on and all sorts of things. That used to go on but I haven’t seen much of it of late because there is such an abundance of vision you can get on teams you don’t really need to do that.”

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Spying still a reality in rugby union