Brett Gosper's tweet about Adam Thomson is not a promising
Early into his job, new IRB boss Brett Gosper has not
No doubt he has some serious business acumen after a 30-year
stint in the advertising world in Europe, Africa, the Middle
East and America since he transferred his Australian-born
talents north of the equator.
But his decision to embroil himself in a review of Adam
Thomson's week ban for trampling, through social networking
site Twitter, is not promising.
It may be a sign about his lack of administrative rugby savvy
but this utterance in the public arena, via Twitter, was not
Gosper succeeded Mike Miller and began work in August charged
with moving the game towards the 2015 World Cup and driving
its commercial business. He may have spoken to the media at
times up north but his seemingly sudden outburst about
Thomson's sentence, as revealed by Twitter devotees, was
Gosper was not as vociferous to my knowledge when Springbok
prop Dean Greyling was banned for just a match when he hit
Richie McCaw with a flying elbow-jolt.
To equate that with Thomson's offence is bizarre.
For the IRB boss to tweet about a review into Thomson's ban
Rugby authorities and lawyers love process and Gosper, no
matter his opinion, should have stayed quiet while he and his
review officers pondered the case.
Once they had assessed their next move, a statement could
have been issued.
Thomson was fortunate.
His action could be dismissed as careless but he looked at
his target, a red and black scrumcap which could not be
confused with the white and blue ball, and then scratched a
lame boot on it.
Dumb, daft, brain explosion, go sit on the naughty chair for
a few weeks. An original two weeks' ban was about right and a
reminder of his obligations.
Changing that penalty to a week because of Thomson's clean
record was as sensible as skateboarding in Harrods.
Global judicial consistency needs to be near the top of the
IRB's must-do list.
Until that uniformity is delivered there will always be these
Sanzar and the IRB need to dovetail their processes and
penalties, it is lame that the IRB, who allegedly run the
world game, does not have any sanction about Sanzar matches.
They have tried to merge the global itineraries, now they
need to do the same with their judicial system.