Thursday, June 30, 2005

D'oh! Sir Clive Does a Homer

There's a remarkable report in this morning's Irish Independent that could explain why Brian O'Driscoll got the doing that he got in the First Test at Christchurch.

As you may remember, Sir Clive got an email from "a Maori" before the tour saying that the correct way for the opposition to show respect for the Haka was to pick up a blade of grass and throw it away. Michael Campbell, the US Open Golf Champion who's in the K-Club for this week's European Open, was quizzed about this yesterday (Campbell is a Maori himself) and Campbell said that that this was exactly the wrong thing to do. Picking up the grass is accepting the challenge yes, but then throwing it away is the most shocking insult there is. This obviously registered with the All-Blacks, hence their pop at O'Driscoll.

Whether what they did to O'Driscoll was within the laws or not is an endless debate, but it does seem odd, when Sir Clive loaded up the Lions' touring party with all manner of specialists, that nobody could have got on the phone to find out exactly what is respect for the haka and what is not. Poor Woodward and Bernstein had to find not one but two confirming sources for any of their Watergate stories - looks like Sir Clive couldn't be arsed finding even one, and hence O'Driscoll got drilled. Very careless indeed.