Holy holiday, Batman, what in the dereliction of duty is going on here? Beaudy B was off lording it at the Super Bowl and while he spent time cheering on his new favourite team, the Kansas City Chiefs, the team he should have been cheering on, nay, playing for, were stumbling and bumbling to an inglorious defeat after surrendering a should-have-been winnable lead versus the rugby Chiefs here.
What chance have Stephen Perofeta, Otere Black and Harry Plummer got? Either of that three could play out of their skin and have the Blues (yes, unlikely- but it’s not the point) into the top half of the Super Rugby table and tracking for the play-offs, only for Lord Beauden to return and usurp the number 10 jersey. Thanks for coming, here’s your reward- splinters up your jacksy from sitting on the pine waiting for Beaudy to tear a hammy.
Most of the ABs want more game time than the paucity they are ‘entitled’ (says it all about NZR) to at the moment. Rieko Ioane stated so, and TJ Perenara even went as far on the network news to say that he would’ve liked to have had a proper run in the pre-season matches.
Now we’ve got the unprecedented case of the national cricket coach having a break during a cricket series against the most powerful nation in the sport, and that on the back of an eight-game losing streak.
Ok, the time off was put in place before things got as gloomy as they are now, but in other lines of high-pressure work it’s not uncommon for a break to be postponed (albeit not if you’re the leader of that nation off to the west). And if there was ever a time for a spell of R n R to be put back, surely now’s that very time. The Commander-in-chief has left the building just when he’s needed to fight the fire that’s consuming it.
Aside from all that, why was this break even planned? As Jeremy Coney stated, we’re not lining up our cannons for the relative fodder of Zimbabwe, Bangladesh and the West Indies. I do not at all buy into any rhetoric that this three-match one-day series is “meaningless”. By some pretty warped acts of fate we were denied a deserved victory in the Cricket World Cup final, so you’d think our cricket hierachy would want to keep showing that our team deserve the title of quasi-World Champs in the 50 over format. And I’ll say it again, it’s INDIA we are up against at the moment. And they’ll be smarting too from their limp semi-final loss to us at the World Cup.
It’s very bad timing for Gary Stead to be on a break at this minute; given his contract expires in September. It’s also embarrassing and stunningly lacking in any accountability. Fans have every right to feel shafted and are fully entitled to be privy any sub-plot to any of this that may be lurking. Yes, more than likely there’s no ulterior reasoning, but this needs to be made clear immediately.
Those 17,000 who made it over to Melbourne after Christmas deserve to know, at the very least. Firstly a lot of them had thought we were the best NZ Cricket team ever. That notion got smashed over the boundary pretty quickly by the ruthless Aussies, so this latest debacle is just another nail in the coffin of fandom.
David White and NZC media, it’s time to front up. Coz so far your silence has been positively deafening. People need transparency. You’ve been asleep at the wheel, please wake up.