Touchlines Down Under: Lessons for us in schoolboy edicts
NEW ZEALAND rugby bosses have compiled 10 commandments for underage matches in an attempt to curtail unruly parents and supporters acting up on the sidelines.
There is concern here that the antics of worked-up parents are leading to an increase in on-field violence in schoolboy matches and that undue pressure is being put on youngsters supposed to be enjoying their rugby.
Thus the commandments, which read as follows: "THOU SHALT NOT ... 1) Yell out instructions. 2) Yell at me in public. 3) Yell at the coach. 4) Put down my team-mates. 5) Put down the other team. 6) Put down the officials. 7) Lose your cool. 8) Lecture me about my mistakes after the game. 9) Forget how to laugh and have fun. 10) Forget that it is just a game."
A commendable move and one that could be effectively applied to the GAA, although if that were to happen, an extra commandment would be required: "11) Thou shalt not lock the referee in the boot of your car."
Kiwis not for 'meating' vegetarians half-way
THE dining on this trip, from the sumptuous seafood of Sol on Auckland's Waterfront to the pork belly in Andre's excellent restaurant in New Plymouth, has been particularly good and that trend has continued in Rotorua.
Town shuts down early in winter-time here -- generally around 9.0 -- but the Ambrosia restaurant very kindly agreed to cater for four famished members of the Irish media the other night just as the chef was about to clock out. Calamari starters were followed by steaks of indisputable quality and each plate was gratefully cleared.
The meat and fish in New Zealand are uniformly excellent; it is no place for vegetarians and the pretension and po-faced piety that frequently accompanies those of that ilk. Nope, when it comes to food, this a man's country and it brought to mind comedian Frankie Boyle's line about his approach to dinner parties and non-meat-eating guests demanding special menus -- "We do have a vegetarian option this evening ... you can go home."
"There's a lot of similarities between the Maoris and the Irish -- you've both had problems with the English in the past ... " -- A local journalist paints a picture for Ireland captain Geordan Murphy at yesterday's press conference.
"What an idiot, a small-minded Irish git that can't see further than his gold pot." -- An angry resident plays the leprechaun card as the vitriol continues to pour in following our take on Thursday night in New Plymouth.
6 Players in Ireland's starting line-up who have played professional club rugby in England: Geordan Murphy, Johne Murphy, Gavin Duffy, Eoin Reddan, Ed O'Donoghue and Dan Tuohy.
Compiled by Hugh Farrelly