Haters gonna hate and because we can here’s our “worst of” list for 2014
The Wellington Lions – Not hard to name this as singularly the worst performance by any New Zealand sports team in 2014. Thrashed by Northland, followed by a disastrous choke against Auckland and subsequent losses to Manawatu, Tasman and Taranaki among others resulted in the team being relegated to the Championship section of the ITM Cup for 2015. By the end of the season the fans had given up too. A fiasco in every sense of the word.
The 2013/14 New Zealand Breakers – were unable to follow up from the three-peat of the previous season and never got over the loss of Cedric Jackson who’s replacement Kerron Johnson never adjusted to the style of the League and couldn’t lead the team the way Jackson had and was cut after one season. Narrowly avoided the wooden spoon however credit must be given where it appears lessons have been learned with the team back where it belongs atop the ANBL ladder at present.
The 2014 Wellington Sevens – Ended up looking like a poorly organised Music Festival awash with drunken, underage patrons in a soaked, half empty Stadium. The rain didn’t help but the NZRFU have essentially placed the Tournament under Statutory Management taking it away from the WRFU. As Toby Robson wrote last week “the Goose that laid the Golden Egg has become a half-cooked Turkey”.
The New Zealand Warriors – sacked their likeable coach Matt Elliott early on after which new Coach Andrew ‘Cappy’ McFadden tried to install some much needed discipline and accountability which from all accounts had all but disappeared, but this made little difference as the team missed the NRL playoffs for the third year in a row. Despite one of the best fan bases in the comp, the ongoing inability to recruit a true superstar seems to be the thing between this team ever winning an inaugural NRL Championship.
Super Rugby – it’s way too long, unbalanced, has an odd 3 week break right when it gets interesting in June and operates using a Conference system that no one really seems to understand. It’s operating body (SANZAR) seems to think that ongoing expansion will solve all its woes (a team from Japan really?). Some real forward thinking is needed to sort this out.
The Sky Sports Rugby and Channel 9 Commentary teams, The All Whites and Phoenix Football sides and the people who wrote nasty stuff about Lydia Ko on the Radio Sport Facebook page.