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England women’s captain ready to take pay cut

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LONDON-England women’s captain Sarah Hunter has said she is willing to take a pay cut to ensure staff at the country’s governing body do not lose their jobs due to the coronavirus crisis.

England’s Rugby Football Union (RFU) faces losses of up to 50 million pounds over the next year-and-a-half with global sport coming to a virtual standstill due to the pandemic. The RFU’s Executive Team have agreed to take a pay cut in excess of 25% and England men’s coach Eddie Jones has also accepted a salary reduction to help ease the financial burden. “That little sacrifice and selflessness can go a long way,” Hunter, 28, told BBC Sport. “I’d be willing to do that to make sure there’s still an RFU and people aren’t having to lose their jobs.”

The RFU handed 28 women players central contracts in January last year — the first union to do so in 15-a-side — making the women’s team a fully-professional team. “I can only speak on behalf of myself,” Hunter added. “But I think you’ve seen the enormous generosity of the country and the community. Everyone is coming together.

“It’s trying to support people in the best way we can. If that means we have to take a pay cut to help protect all our jobs I know I for one would be willing to do that.” England topped the women’s Six Nations standings before the tournament joined the growing list of global events suspended or postponed due to the pandemic.

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