BBC Home

Explore the BBC


user rating: 5 star

A tarnished name

comment on the article

As a lifelong follower and lover of rugby, I have to sympathise with the loyal Harlequin fans out there. It must seem like a nightmare right now, and its not far off.

...Lets face it, from now on no matter what you do, you will always be known as the team that cheated.
It only takes a second to ruin a name and reputation, but it takes a lifetime to build it back.

I'm not entirely sure what was going through Dean Richards mind... A man with his stature should have known better.
The thing that really worries me is that was it a moment of madness? Or was it a calculated risk made by a man who had done something like this before? And it's quite clearly the latter. If someone like Dean Richards- a man mountain, and someone who I'd always respected, can do something like this then whats the world coming to? And Evans... must follow him after reading Williams testimony, a sad and shameful account of what has been going on.

This is something that I thought I'd never see in rugby, as its tarnished the sports name and reputation also.

Should Dean Richards have any place left in the game after his ban? I know that he would like to return to the sport, and I'm all for second chances, but does he warrant our forgiveness? has he done irrepular damage to his reputation? Surely all eyes would be on him, scrutinising... If he does come back, I can't see him ever becoming a head coach, or director of rugby again... and rightly so!

There is no place for actions like this in Rugby, and people who put the game into disrepute have no place in any aspect of our sport.

Lets hope Harlequins do the right thing, get rid of the people that need getting rid of, and move on from this stronger...

Latest 10 comments

Read members' comments or add your own
comment by Bob (U3660990)

posted Aug 31, 2009

Worsley can hardly claim his team to be innocent. Look at the amount of times their matches have gone to uncontested scrums,

If the bookies would give you odds you could make a fortune betting on what time Vickery would come off (usually between the 60th and 65th minute) with an injury, then what time Wasps replacement prop would also come off injured to be replaced by a flanker (usually two or three minutes after the opposition had substituted their front row).

There was even an article before the Guinness Premiership Final a couple of years ago which mentioned that it was likely to happen, it did and Wasps only went unpunished by the RFU because the team they played that day knew it was going to happen and so practiced set piece moves for uncontested scrums resulting in them scoring a try from one.

There is a lot of cheating that goes on particularly around feigning injury if your front row isn't as strong as the opposition. I even recall a Pilkington Cup match several years ago where a Gloucester forward lied to the referee on televesion about his inability to play tighthead prop so that he didn't have to come on and the game could go to uncontested scrums when Gloucester were being driven back several metres at every scrum.

add comment | complain about this comment

comment by langdt (U14122357)

posted Aug 31, 2009

I'm a Harlequins supporter who thinks that Mark Evans should stay at Harlequins. In my opinion Harlequins have admitted to cheating and lying and should be allowed to move on.

add comment | complain about this comment

posted Aug 31, 2009

BINGO, draw a line under it and lets play rugby!!!!!

add comment | complain about this comment

comment by Dominic (U9694271)

posted Aug 31, 2009

I'm sorry but there are some teams out there I wouldn't mind casting a stone at us (Quins) as far as I know glous, LI etc are all good decent teams but a wasps player. Come on you'd of thought all their front row should have retired by now with the number of "injuries" they've sustained. I mean not to offend but it'd be like leicester claiming that another team were forward orientated. Pot kettle black anyone?

add comment | complain about this comment

posted Sep 1, 2009

Sad incident for the game of Rugby in general but let's move forward.

add comment | complain about this comment

posted Sep 2, 2009

Honest rugby fans wont draw a line under this disgrace until they feel justice has been done - and with Evans still there and no ban for the club that certainly isnt the case.

Not surprised some quins fans jumping on Worsley's comments to try to take the heat off their team and their outrageous behaviour.

We'll move on when justice has been done not before so live with it.

add comment | complain about this comment

posted Sep 2, 2009

just curious RIP, why do you feel the whole club should be banned for this offence, yet not for other offences (drug use etc). the guilty parties in this affair have been banned, why would you like to see those who were not involved also banned?

Also, if the Dally task force does uncover further evidence of cheating, would you advocate similar punishments, or worse for still not coming forward in the face of this affair?

add comment | complain about this comment

posted Sep 2, 2009

Very obvious answer and you know it - because clubs are responsible for the cheating that their team blatantly carries out. If clubs fans riot (hardly a rugby scenario thankfully !!!) the club is responsible. You know the very clear difference between individual or collective misdemenours.

Bath players a disgrace but dont digress - as you know the huge majority of rugby fans think Quins exceptionally lucky with pitiful sanctions being handed out.

So far anyway............

add comment | complain about this comment

posted Sep 3, 2009

thats fine, i see you point. I am asking for proper debate, not to argue. I just mean you would be punishing players that were not neccessarily involved by banning them as well. Yes clubs are responsible for their fans, but the club doesn't get punished if 4 players are red carded - the players who desereved red cards are. And I think this is a similar situation. Those parties guilty have been punished.

As for my second point, what I was referring to was the new RFU task force which Dally is heading up to look at other incidences of cheating. I realise a lot of the issue has been the cover up Quins did, and didn't admit their actions immediately. I wondered what you think should happen if other teams (and I know its hypothetical and an IF) are now found guilty of similar practices and have kept quiet for this long though the whole affair, and not put their hands up. As any hypothetical guilty parties have now had a substantial time to come forward, would you consider them guilty or a worse cover up?

add comment | complain about this comment

Comment on this article

Sorry, you can only contribute to 606 during opening hours. These are 0900-2300 UK time, seven days a week, but may vary to accommodate sporting events and UK public holidays.


Rate Breakdown

  • 5 100.00%
    3 votes
  • 4
    0 votes
  • 3
    0 votes
  • 2
    0 votes
  • 1
    0 votes

average rating:
5.00 from 3 votes