sport news Vickii Cornborough excited for future of women's rugby

England prop Vickii Cornborough believes women's rugby will continue to grow following this summer's World Cup – despite the RFU slashing players' contracts.

The RFU announced before this summer's tournament in Ireland, where England were defeated in the final by New Zealand, that it would be cutting full-time deals for women's XVs players.

The decision was part of a shift in focus towards the Sevens programme ahead of the Sevens World Cup and Commonwealth Games, which are both in 2018.

England prop Vickii Cornborough believes women's rugby will continue to grow

England prop Vickii Cornborough believes women's rugby will continue to grow

The RFU plan to switch between XV and Sevens contracts in what has been seen as a cynical move, but it was heavily criticised by MPs and former high-profile players like World Cup winner Maggie Alphonsi.

Cornborough was one of those to lose her full-time contract after the World Cup this summer, but she has urged people to trust the RFU when it comes to growing the women's game.

'Within the media there is always a focus on what is going to grab the headlines,' said Cornborough.

'If you sit back and take the whole picture into account it is a lot more positive. Genuinely it is a vision for the whole women's section.

'I would love the best of both worlds. I absolutely relished having a professional contract and being able to train full-time – and that no doubt is going to happen again.

'It is a waiting game for me in terms of waiting for that to happen. They (the RFU) know what they are doing.'

Cornborough's faith in the RFU is born out of their investment in the women's domestic game.

England's governing body will spend £2.4m over three years on the new Tyrrells Premier 15s, which it hopes will have huge long-term benefits.

The new division forces clubs to have minimum requirements, such as an academy system running alongside its first XV to raise the number of players in the elite competition

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