How pathetic is Rugby Australia’s (RA) “peace offering” to buy off Israel Folau for $1mn? Good on Folau for rejecting it. It only proves his religious beliefs aren’t for sale.
It is becoming more and more typical of boards to yield to trolls on social media which ends up in knee-jerk decisions that often end up backfiring. This week The Australian conducted a poll of c.27,000 people which showed 89% support for keeping Folau in the Wallabies team.
If RA’s board acted rationally, it could have simply made a public statement saying it deeply disapproved of what Folau wrote on Twitter yet his words are protected under the Constitution of Australia.
Instead, the board panicked and revealed its own shortcomings in dealing with the crisis. Management’s behaviour seems to have filtered down to the players too. Several Wallabies made comments suggesting they may boycott the team if Folau stays. It is almost guaranteed they won’t sacrifice their lucrative contracts to virtue signal. Pure vanity at its worst.
Why hasn’t the RA board removed the coach for poor real world performance? The board is there to build a team that can win. That’s what sells tickets and brings fans. Coach Michael Cheika’s record is the worst of any Wallabies coach period. Yet he remains.
He has a 43% overall win record at the helm. With the All Blacks its 17%. England 13%. Ireland 20%. Even Scotland is 50%.
Bob Dwyer – 64% win record
Alan Jones – 68%
Greg Smith – 63%
Rod Macqueen – 79%
Eddie Jones – 58%
John Connolly- 59%
Robbie Deans – 58%
Ewen Mackenzie- 50%
Maybe the board should consider Cheika’s actual performance rather than his views on Folau’s social media engagement. Clearly political correctness is a bigger priority at RA.
Please spare us the “inclusivity & diversity” babble. By explicitly trying to exclude Folau for his religious beliefs, RA clearly acts how it proclaims it does not. Furthermore to offer $1m shows that the RA has little case to answer for. Whatever ‘code of conduct or inclusion’ clauses in his contract may exist, they do not supersede the Constitution.
CM does not think highly of what Folau said but defends his right to say it.
RA’s board should be focused on what matters (winning) rather than wasting countless time and money trying to restore their tarnished reputation to a tiny cabal of social justice warriors.