All sorts of damning praise is leaching from the British
They can't help themselves. They are forced to concede the
might and style of sides south of the equator, especially the
All Blacks, while forging on with barrages of disgust about
their dirty play.
Andrew Hore is the latest target while Adam Thomson's stupid
head scrape remains a handy backup.
Howls have come about the All Blacks' lack of remorse or
acceptance of Hore's reckless clobbering of Welsh lock
Davies was running interference across Hore's line and was
thumped with a roundhouse clout. He will be banned.
Somehow the Lord Nelson media brigade in the UK then paint
Hore and Thomson's acts of foul play as endemic within the
This season five All Blacks have been sin binned in their 13
tests. Not great, but none could be classed as vicious or
malicious until Hore's unpunished brain snap.
Fullback Israel Dagg has been shown yellow twice for an
illegal mid-air tackle and entering a ruck from the side,
Brodie Retallick earned one post-match for a dangerous
tackle, Tony Woodcock for repeated ruck infringements,
Thomson for his bootwork and Cory Jane for an illegal
To somehow suggest that list, especially with Thomson and
Hore's foul play in close succession, means the All Blacks
are filthy to their core is pushing the boat out, even for
This year England have had squad members punished for deeds
on and off the track.
Flanker Calum Clark received 32 weeks for breaking an
opponent's arm but the memory of that seems to have
Halfback Ben Youngs got a week for striking, buddy Danny Care
had misconduct charges off the field, Chris Ashton was banned
after picking up three yellow cards for foul play and Dylan
Hartley nailed eight weeks for biting Irish forward Stephen
England forwards coach Graham Rowntree was still defensive
after Hartley's verdict.
"It is unfortunate for Dylan and Northampton especially as he
was in good form during the Six Nations and he has developed
as a player and leader."
Precious little contrition there, while the UK scribes wanted
that from the All Blacks before Hore's hearing.
And if they want to just cast their minds back only to last
year's World Cup, they'll recall Courtney Lawes' ban for
"recklessly striking" Pumas hooker Mario Ledesma with his
Not to be outdone, England officials Dave Alred and Paul
Stridgeon were banned for switching balls during the game
Off the track misconduct charges were filed against captain
Mike Tindall for his Queenstown antics, James Haskell and
Ashton were fined after filming a Dunedin waitress and then
Manu Tuilagi jumped off an Auckland ferry.
Soon after the team got home, Lawes and Delon Armitage were
both sinbinned for dangerous high tackles in the premiership.
Selective memories? Maybe. Fear and loathing. Probably,
because there is no side in world rugby that teams want to
beat more than England.
- By Wynne Gray of the NZ Herald