Cape Town - Clive Woodward, England’s 2003 Rugby World Cup-winning coach, is the latest inductee into the Rugby Players' Association (RPA) Hall of Fame.
Woodward, who has already received knighthood, will be honoured at the RPA Players' Awards 2018 in association with England Rugby, taking place on Wednesday, May 9 at Battersea Evolution in London.
The 62-year-old will join an illustrious list of previous inductees, including Jonny Wilkinson, Martin Johnson, Sir Ian McGeechan, Gareth Edwards, Brian O'Driscoll and the 2017 inductee Dan Carter.
Woodward achieved remarkable success in his role as England head coach, transforming the national side as they transitioned from the amateur age into the professional era.
During his tenure, England achieved 22 consecutive wins at Twickenham as well as 14 consecutive victories home and away against southern hemisphere powerhouses New Zealand, Australia and South Africa.
He also secured three Six Nations wins, including a memorable Grand Slam in 2003, before cementing England’s place in history by winning the 2003 Rugby World Cup in sensational style against hosts Australia.
Following his World Cup triumph, Woodward took on the role of head coach of the British and Irish Lions for the 2005 tour of New Zealand before being appointed director of sport for Team GB where he played a pivotal role in the success of the London 2012 Olympics.
As a player Woodward enjoyed a successful rugby career, joining Harlequins in 1974 and later signing for Leicester Tigers, before making his England debut in 1980.
A talented centre, Woodward went on to earn 21 Test caps for his country and toured with the British and Irish Lions on two occasions in 1980 and 1983. He finished his playing career captaining Manly RFC in Sydney.
On receiving the news, Woodward commented: “It is a great honour to be inducted into the RPA Hall of Fame, alongside some wonderful players and personalities who have contributed so much to the game. I still consider myself a player first and a coach second. It was my experiences as a player that have shaped my approach to coaching. I still view the game through a player's eyes and I am sure that is why I love the game now as much as ever. I would like to thank Damian (Hopley, RPA Group CEO) and the RPA for their tireless support to players and for this great honour. I would also like to thank all those team mates, players, coaches, colleagues and friends who have made rugby so special for me.”
Hopley added: “Sir Clive remains the only northern hemisphere coach to lift the Webb Ellis Cup and his achievements with the national side have rightfully enshrined his place in English rugby history. Many of the infamous class of ’03 have been inducted into the RPA Hall of Fame and it is rightly fitting that Sir Clive joins them.”