Eddie Jones defends Latham session - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Eddie Jones defends Latham session

By Steve Connolly 08/01/2007 09:10:25 PM Comments (0)

Reds coach Eddie Jones has defended letting Chris Latham join a training session with his Queensland teammates that left the Wallabies fullback with a serious knee injury.

Preliminary scans have found Latham tore both his anterior cruciate and medial ligaments at Reds training on Saturday.

Latham was hurt in a collision with a teammate after scoring a try in a contact session at training.

The 31-year-old will visit a specialist on Wednesday and is expected to have a knee reconstruction which will keep him out of the Reds Super 14 campaign.

Latham's Tri-Nations and World Cup campaign is also in doubt, prompting an angry response from Australian coach John Connolly.

Connolly said Latham had only just finished with a Wallabies three-day training camp in Canberra and he questioned why the 72 Test veteran was involved with the optional Reds session.

"We're going to ask for a report out of Queensland about how it happened cause he was in the 22 RPA group supposedly staying out of all contact," he said on ABC radio.

Latham said it was his decision to train with the Reds while Jones said there were no clear edicts from the Australian Rugby Union over how Super 14 sides handled their star Wallabies.

"There's been no clear edict one way or the other from the ARU and anyone who says otherwise is lying and Lath wanted to train on Saturday," Jones said.

"If we had more players with Chris' attitude I think we'd be doing a little bit better.

"What do you do, not train? You can't get around the fact rugby's a physical sport.

"You can do your back in picking up your baby - do you stop players being a father at home?"

Latham described the mishap as "freakish".

"It's one of those stupid freakish things that considering a week ago I was behind a boat (water) skiing and nothing happened and now all of a sudden I go out and train like I have the last 10 or 11 years and this happens.

"You just can't help an accident."

Jones said Latham was a "quick healer" who would take heart from the fact John Eales led the Wallabies to World Cup glory in 1999 after recovering from a serious shoulder injury.

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