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Bloodgate - why is like MPs expenses

English Harlequins
by Sausage1966 (U4392044) 02 September 2009
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Shut up about bloody bloodgate. I mentioned this before in a thread, but the more I think about it, the more it rings true.

Anyone who thinks Quinns are the only team to have cheated in this way is at best narrow minded. I suspect a lot of coaches are sweating buckets. Nevertheless, its done.

When MP's expenses hit the headlines, it was shocking - the whole country was up in arms. It was going on for a long time and, it appeared, everyone was at it.

The parallel continues. Once discovered, the extent of the crime was shocking. People were punished and lost their jobs. It was out in the open and exposed. Now, not a word on the subject. Why? - because it was an cross party scandal and its not in the interests of one party as they too are guilty.

Because this case has so far been limited to Quinns, many are taking pleasure in their misery. Not just other nations, but fans of other sports keen to deflect from their own sordid scandals.

The reality is this. Bloodgate is now history. Punishments have been issued and investigation will only serve to underline what we already suspect. Richards was severely dealt with - what do they want from him.... er, blood perhaps?

One thing is for sure - it will NEVER happen again.

Every blood injury will be the focus of TV scrutiny, close inspection by officials, forth officials and citing commissioners everywhere. Potential culprits know the career ending penalties they face.

Perhaps the legacy of this is that Rugby will become the most carefully scrutinized and policed team game on earth. To Rugby's credit, they have exposed, admitted and stopped this type of cheating and are forming a team of ex players and officials to further combat any recurrence.

As such, I believe we should leave it to the experts and all move on once and for all. (he says writing another bloody article on the subject - but it was in a final kind of way)

For the interests of impartiality - I am a Wasps fan.

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posted Sep 4, 2009

as far as i am concerned any player, coach, director or mascot that knowlingly tries to decieve the IRB, the Heiniken cup, it fans, opposition fans and brings the game into serious disrepute by trying to cheat to gain a positional and financial (lets face its money was the motivator) advantage to the potentially severe detriment of another club, its fans, the reputationa of the game we all love deserves a severe proffessional punishment for a proffessional crime/fraud and it is something that should be talked about and scrutinised for some time to come. The only people i feel sorry for in this saga are the quins fans who will feel severley let down by their club (which includes the board of directors).

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posted Sep 4, 2009

"It's probably his downfall but he's stubborn and very bloody-minded," added Best.

Good pun Mr Best!

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posted Sep 4, 2009

Williams is being unfairly criticised in my view, purely as a front for mitigating the actions of Richards and the other Harlequins officials.
If you think about it, on the day of the Leinster game all Williams was doing was going out to play a game of rugby, just as he was contracted to do and as he had no doubt dreamed of doing since he was a schoolboy.
And then Dean Richards and Steph Brennan targetted him as the man to fake a blood injury.
He was being used in a much bigger power play, and there is no way round that.
How he responded after that, having been placed in a position where most young men would struggle and buckle, is secondary surely?
Personally I think he coped reasonably well through it all - negotiating what must have been one minefield after another of difficult decisions and manipulative relationships to deal with.
He was put in that position by Richards and the club through no fault of his own.
He no doubt had all kinds of voices in his ear advising him to do this and that - clubmates, the Players' Association, Richards himself, Jillings, Evans, his own family - a very tough test of character for a young man, all in the heat of media scrutiny.
No fault or blame should be placed on him whatsoever in my view. He coped well enough as the innocent party in the first instance. If he made some wrong moral calls, then how much more so Richards, the harlequins senior board and staff, other players who were not involved, and even the Quins fans who stood by and watched it all.
If anyone in all this deserves a break, its Williams surely?
The lad just wanted to play rugby.

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comment by Nathan (U9208515)

posted Sep 4, 2009

I've found the whole bloodgate affair facinating. The whole Tom Williams plea bargaining episode is straight out of a crime novel for a start!

I think Dick Best has a point, three years is a long time and Richards will have a future in rugby if he wants it.

I think sport takes cheating very seriously because people are not interested in watching fixed games. (unless you like watching WWE) thats why Athletes who are caught with steroids in their blood stream are villified more than say Matt Stevens who was caught with recreational drugs.

Dean richards has been caught cheating in a very insiduous manner that makes you wonder how many rugby matches are actually won fair and square. That is blade aimed at the very heart of the sport! Its why the RFU had to act by setting up their task force. Other ex rugby players have said that this is a wide spread problem. I think it's either Cardiff or the WRU who said they are'nt watching the events unfold with a smug look of their faces but are taking serious stock of the RFU's responses and considering something along the same lines. I have to say the such an attitude is fantastic.

English rugby has taken a real beating this season, its ironic that the athoriities crack down on the odd punch up among forwards saying it puts parents off letting their kids play rugby and then we get blood capsules, drug cultures and premiereship rugby teams fighting in pubs in London! If you have a dark sense if humour you'll see the funny side to that as well!

I'm not a big fan of professionalism, I hate the way the core traditions are slowly whittled away and replaced with shallow mainstream hollywood shininess, so its quite fun to watch the dark side of professionalism be scrutinised in all its lurid foulness.

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posted Sep 4, 2009

"It's probably his downfall but he's stubborn and very bloody-minded," added Best.

Good pun Mr Best!



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posted Sep 4, 2009

Some good points. But I don't think Quins have their place in the HK as a 'reward' for cheating!! Might have something to do with their performance in the GP last season I think.

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posted Sep 4, 2009

This whole Bloodgate saga has been very unfortunate for the sport of rugby union. Having ended part of the summer with the magnificent Lions tour still ringing fresh in our ears, we saw some phenomenal rugby being played and I feel the Lions class of 2009 captured the hearts and imagination of everyone involved both in the Rainbow Nation and back home in the United Kingdom. As we all know, the Lions are this unique and amazing experience and the players said they loved their time down under when they ran the world champions unbelievable close in their own back yard.

But since then our beloved game has been tarnished, and quite badly. With both Bath and Harlequins suffering quite heavily off the field, their reputations have been badly damaged. With the drug scandal having happened before Bloodgate, the limelight has been stolen away from Bath which they must be pleased about as they have stayed in the shadows quietly being able to get ready for the new season.

But, sadly for all involved, Harlequins is a completlty different story and it is a crying shame that this happened in the first place. Throughout the whole saga, I have not known what to make of it all. I mean, where do you start? I do feel that it has been blown out of all proportion and that in the context of the match involved, it thankfully did not have any effect on the outcome of the result.

But, you cannot turn away from the fact that Harlequins deliberately lied and cheated in order to illegeally gain an upper hand on their opponenets. And, they cannot shy away from their actions as it is there for all to see. As much as I respect Dean Richards as a persona dn as a England and Lions rugby legend, for the life of me I just cannot understand what drove him to carry out such barbaric actions.

For sure, he may want to do anything to win but instead of trying to get round the problem, he should face it head on making sure his beloved Quins side is not in a danger of losing to start off with. Having read everyone's views on this matter, I feel it has been drawn out and it will be difficult for them this season. For sure, player movement has been minimal but to lose such a talented director of rugby is always going to be hard to replace.

Reading all the reports, Tom Williams was left in a hopeless situation. He did not want to go through with the cheating but was forced to. It just beggars belief that they would even consider to do such a thing as the consequences are massive, as they have found out to their cost. I hope that all involved can rebuild their shattered reputation but they have been battered in every sense off the field in the build up to the new season.

Oh boy, who would have thought blood capsules would attract so much attention. It is just an ugly and unfortunate episode which is beginning to turn nasty. British and Irish Lions 2009, we need you back, and don't we all know it!

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posted Sep 4, 2009

here's hoping this post doesn't get pulled again just for posting an opinion - Williams thought about the offer and responded with a counter.

Well did he use a blood capsule or not ?Did he wink at the bench or not ? Yes on both counts.
Spare us the Joan of Arc speech.
Instead of banging on about moral values why not point out that another good message to youngsters is being responsible for one's actions.

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posted Sep 4, 2009

"Anyone who thinks Quinns are the only team to have cheated in this way is at best narrow minded."

have any other teams done it? care to name names?

im afraid harlequins got caught, and its hard to prove if other teams were doing it.

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posted Sep 8, 2009

Sorry, sausage1966, but the logic of your argument carries about as much weight as a criminal in court pleading innocence on the basis that everyone is at it.

It will not be time to move on until adequate punishment has been administered. And IMHO the punishment administered so far is not enough so long as the likes of your good self say it is time to move on.

Using your analogy with MPs' expenses ... do you really think that the ultimate punishment for that fiasco should be limited to a quarter of a million pounds and one parliamentary term?

How much do you value the game?

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