Underarms, Catamarans and Food Poisonings

Green Kettle calls Pot Black

Kiwi sports fans have had to bear the accusation that they are whiners for far too long. Conspiracy or not, the boys in black were poisoned in ’95. And last November the ref did rob us of a semi final place. But mention these two occasions and you’re a sore loser and a whinging Kiwi. But is this not a little hypocritical coming from our counterparts?

Brad Thorn’s off the ball tackle on Springbok captain John Smit was appalling. Rightfully he will be spending the next 80 minutes of rugby down in Dunedin on the bench. Thorn apologised, Smit accepted, acknowledging such things happen in contact sport. Now, a few days later, Smit has accused the All Blacks of being a law unto themselves. “Just imagine Bakkies Botha doing something similar to Richie McCaw. World rugby would have come to a standstill.” Smit is understandably disappointed at being ruled out for Saturday’s test, but is he not getting a little hysterical here? On top of this, coach Peter de Villiers has accused Tony Woodcock of cheating in the scrums, a charge which All Black coach Graham Henry denies.

Isn’t this all a bit rich? South Africa employed a tactic of targeting All Black play maker Dan Carter, whether he had the ball of not. On numerous occasions Carter and others were hit before receiving the ball or long after getting rid of it, or even when they had not even had it. However this did not rattle our boys. This is also the same team that pushes the offside rule to breaking point. I don’t think the Springboks could ever win a game if the refs kept an eye on the Bok defense, as Habana would get his hands on a lot less intercepts. As for rough play, South Africa has a history of biting off more than they can chew against New Zealand…

Ref Stu Dickinson has admitted he should have sent off Thorn during the game, but says he did not get a good view of the incident. Would this have affected the game? Of course, do not forget that Dickinson has also admitted he got it wrong when he disallowed Kaino’s try. The lead should have actually been much larger!

The complaining is simply a tactic to distract the All Black’s from their game, and distract the attention from the Boks’ lack of game. The world champion team who won the Webb Ellis trophy without meeting stiff opposition is certainly having their abilities tested, against what really is a team in transition.

So who is complaining now? In the 1995 final we lost in extra time to a Joel Stranksy drop goal. In November last year New Zealand lost the quarter final to France by only two points. Arguably a dubious first half sending off, an obvious forward pass and a second half full of unpenalised French infringements cost us the game. Last week South Africa (and England who also accused the AB’s of cheating earlier this year) lost by a lot more than that. The only way either team could have come out on top was if Wayne Barnes officiated!

Oh no…


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