KSA Shark ©

Give the Man a break

Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark ©)

Posted in :In the news, Springboks on 3 Jul 2009 at 19:44
Tagged with :

As rolling campaigns go, the plot to unseat Peter de Villiers has been spectacularly translucent. One uses the term loosely because it is probably less of a formal “plot” of conspirators than an exercise that gains new converts with each passing day because they fear getting left behind.

Rodney Hartman writes for the Star that fresh adherents join the anti-lobby because it’s safe in the majority camp where each member feeds off the other, and so it grows.

At the centre of this are some experts who have been gunning for De Villiers, for whatever reason, from day one. It seems they believe the media is above criticism. If he should make any reference to the media like, for example, “it seems that some of us are hard of hearing”, this is characterised as an attack on the media, and the adherents add it to their store of ammo.

For the British press, this local circus has become surprisingly useful for creating diversions and excuses and delivering “shock-horror” copy.

And every time that De Villiers says something daft, which is his style and, like the awful vuvuzela, a distinctly South African racket, the list of his original sins is rehashed with relish. Some reporters seem to have made this their vocation, driven solely by their dislike for a man who doesn’t rate us of the ink-stained fraternity. He is certainly not admired by me for taking that position but, if he wants to, that’s his business.

I still judge him on results, and please don’t tell me “substitutions!” because he did win that first Test.

At the start of the Lions tour, De Villiers apparently gave a facetious response at a press conference. The media attacked him for daring to be cheeky to a visitor they described as a highly respected English rugby writer. There have been many other coaches who have been mildly rude to rugby writers but no one dares call them to heel.

At worst, he might lack the finesse and diplomacy to tell a rugby writer to go to hell in such a way as he may relish making the trip.

For the anti-lobby, the best thing by far, however, was De Villiers reportedly condoning foul play. Did he really condone it or did he perhaps err in making a call too quickly and then floundering in his swamp of metaphors?

We can debate the rights and wrongs of his dodgy articulation forever, but if our visitors truly believe that a Springbok coach is so contemptible as to promote eye gouging, then they are as deserving of our contempt.

At least in their reporting on the issue, the British media unwittingly conceded that the only way their team could beat the Springboks was to see one of our players sent off. One of them said it quite bluntly: the failure to red card the silly Burger “cost the Lions victory”.


  • 100%

  • Comment 1, posted at 03.07.09 19:50:18 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • Amen! Well written article…

  • Comment 2, posted at 03.07.09 20:00:13 by wpw Reply
  • @wpw (Comment 2) :

    As I mentioned earlier to Rob on another thread. it’s easier to jump on the bandwagon than to let it go by.

  • Comment 3, posted at 03.07.09 20:06:03 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • You guys shouldn’t swim against the stream. It’ll wear you out. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 4, posted at 03.07.09 22:04:42 by klempie Reply

  • A sensible journo – hats off to you Rodney.

    I have been in a number of press conferences with a mate of mine who is a sports journo, and the fact is that most journos are fat and lazy from eating and drinking at the complimentary tables, and will write whatever suits the guys who pay their bills.

    Rank right down there with estate agents in my view.

  • Comment 5, posted at 04.07.09 09:46:16 by Big Fish Reply
    Big Fish
  • While Div has been hauled over the coals, perhaps a few journos should be as well for their selctive (mis)quoting to suit their own agendas.

    These guys happily take the freebies and food and drink and look like mini props who played wing for their school team’s team’s 8th side.

    This whole issue has become really ugly and as always, there is not just one side to the story!

  • Comment 6, posted at 04.07.09 10:02:22 by Baldrick Reply

  • But….

    How can he use ‘well respected’ to describe a journo?

  • Comment 7, posted at 04.07.09 10:32:21 by Rahul Reply

  • This is probably true but beggars the question as to why Rodney Hartman would publish this in a newspaper article instead of addressing it with his fellow scribes while feeding at the trough at Ellis Park this afternoon.
    Maybe he thinks he will be promoted to the front seats or get an exclusive at this afternoons presser. Clever man. 😉

  • Comment 8, posted at 04.07.09 11:26:16 by Salmonoid Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the Subtle
  • @Rahul (Comment 7) : Thats like KSA complaining about players wanting to play overseas! 😉

  • Comment 9, posted at 04.07.09 11:45:32 by Rahul Reply

  • Steyn misses that penalty a la S14 final ’07. 😳

  • Comment 10, posted at 04.07.09 12:13:49 by klempie Reply

  • @klempie (Comment 10) : Wrong thread. 😳

  • Comment 11, posted at 04.07.09 12:15:06 by klempie Reply

  • I think P Div is his own worst enemy.

    Either he is too naive or arrogant to realise that part of his job is charming the media.

    Most people who are elevated to a position within an organisation where they have to face the press go on a course on how to handle the media, apparently he is not willing to do this.

    Some of his comments are not worthy of someone in his level of responsibility – saying things like I wont change is just arrogant and stupid. His position dictates meeting the media and being part of the springbok brand not the P Div brand. By changing his attitude and comments slightly he could win over the media and not have to change himself totally. This is a normal example of any maturation and growing increase in responsibility that ever person faces throughout life, if you want the position and associated perks you have to behave in a manner befitting the position.

  • Comment 12, posted at 04.07.09 12:57:46 by beez Reply

  • @beez (Comment 12) : Agreed.

  • Comment 13, posted at 04.07.09 13:08:15 by klempie Reply


  • Comment 14, posted at 04.07.09 13:15:07 by blackshark Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!
  • Please show me one Bok coach who got on well with the media?? Instead of giving the current coach credit for his achievements they rather question nearly every decision he makes. I remember like it was yesterday when JJ Harmse refused to credit Jake for the RWC win in 07. He had praise for the SARU even though they treated Jake like shit just before the tournament. Most journos are scum. Period!

  • Comment 15, posted at 04.07.09 13:49:28 by wpw Reply
  • @wpw (Comment 15) : i’m just a wannabe journo, so I’m exempt 🙂

  • Comment 16, posted at 04.07.09 14:35:09 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @wpw (Comment 15) :

    That was when BB harmse thought he was in the running as the Media officer for the new Bok coach, who he thought would be Heyneke Meyer. 😆

  • Comment 17, posted at 04.07.09 14:56:45 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©

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