The RPA has welcomed the decision of the RFU Acting Chief Executive Martyn Thomas to significantly reduce the wholly unprecedented sanction meted out to Mike Tindall earlier this month.
RPA Chief Executive Damian Hopley commented:
"Whilst we still believe the fine is excessive and disproportionate to the factual events of that night in Queenstown, we are relieved that Mike has been reinstated into the full England EPS Squad.
"We have always maintained that the original judgement was misguided and mishandled and it is our assertion that Mike has been unfairly treated as a scapegoat on this matter. The reduction in the fine and reinstatement into the full England EPS Squad confirms this.
"Our main issue is that this matter should have been dealt with at the time by the relevant senior RFU personnel who were on the ground in New Zealand. To have this incident playing out very publically in the media ten weeks after the event sets a very worrying precedent for future tours, and we will be taking up this matter with the RFU to ensure that these situations are not repeated.
"The significant reputational damage to all the parties involved in this matter is something that we feel could have been avoided with the appropriate action taken at the time.
"In attempting to move forward from this matter, the RPA totally accepts the need for our members to fully take responsibility for their actions whilst representing both club and country, and there are valuable lessons that have been learnt throughout this RWC campaign.
"By addressing these issues through on-going education and support, we remain confident that rugby union in England can recover from what have been some of the most damaging months in its history.
"In closing, the RPA would like to thank Owen Eastwood of Lewis Silkin for all of his invaluable help in getting Mike's sanction reduced."
There will be no further comment on this matter from the RPA or Mike Tindall until further notice.