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Tindall keen to move on

Mike Tindall has failed to address the storm of controversy which has swirled around him since he went out drinking with a group of England players.

The Gloucester centre was speaking publicly for the first time since he was captured on CCTV in conversation with a woman in Queenstown's Altitude Bar. Tindall looked sheepish as he sat alongside England manager Martin Johnson and both men side-stepped questions on the issue.

Asked whether the last week had been difficult, Tindall mumbled: "Not really, you just get on and train. You want to play every game and I was disappointed I didn't get a run out last weekend but you work hard and hope you get picked by the coach every week. It is as simple as that."

The Rugby Football Union announced at the outset of the press conference that only questions of a rugby nature would be permitted. Tindall briefly denied the last week had been a challenging time for him and said he hoped his form would hold up "fine" as he prepares to start against Romania on Saturday.

Johnson then intervened to deflect all further questions on the subject, including inquiries as to whether the saga had been a distraction to the squad.

"We have put it to bed. We are looking forward to a big game, we are playing Romania," said Johnson.

Tindall missed last Sunday's 41-10 victory over Georgia which, according to Johnson, was down to squad rotation and not a disciplinary decision. But the 2003 World Cup-winning centre is back to start in an England team featuring seven changes, including the return of wing Mark Cueto.

Tindall was asked by a television reporter whether he had anything to add, whether he wanted to show some "contrition" or offer an explanation and Johnson jumped in.

"I said to you last week what happened, the guys went out and had a drink. We had that conversation last week," said Johnson.

"We have moved on. We have played a game and we have another one this week."


From Belfast Telegraph