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Rugby's Andrew Hore in no position to call the NRL a tiddlywinks competition

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Expert
15th March, 2019
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3068 Reads

Sporting fans around the country could be forgiven for asking; ‘who the hell is Andrew Hore?’

He’s a Kiwi from Canterbury who has been the CEO of both Rugby NSW and the Waratahs after a search around the world in 2016 to replace the outgoing Greg Harris, one of the all-time great sporting administrators.

Harris’ credentials are spelled out in my Roar column of April 2, 2015. He was a skilled communicator as well.

The same can’t be said of Andrew Hore.

Last week he came out of the closet to say – “Rugby is a global game, we’re not kicking around in a tiddlywinks competition like the NRL, which is only played in this part of the world”.

Really?

Even in Australia, rugby is behind the AFL, rugby league, cricket and soccer in public interest. The way the Waratahs and Wallabies have been playing of late, tiddlywinks on its own would almost rate a mention.

Apparently Hore isn’t rated among the other codes either, as all four have a rapport these days which is healthy.

Gone are the days of nit-picking each other as the senior administrators of all four codes at national level regularly discuss the problems of the day.

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Except with Andrew Hore.

Having watched the Waratahs being beaten by the Brumbies 13-19 in Canberra last night, Hore would be better advised to concentrate on improving his Super Rugby side rather than taking a cheap shot at rugby league.

The Waratahs are playing anything but Super Rugby, it’s more like rubbish rugby.

Last night the Waratahs enjoyed 61 per cent possession, and 63 per cent territory, in the first half, but the Brumbies led 12-5.

And the five came off a Bernard Foley regulation penalty shot that slammed into the right goal post and bounced into Michael Hooper’s hands following through to cross for a try.

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The Foley conversion also slammed into the upright, but the flyhalf eventually landed one from four, leaving seven points out there that would have given the Waratahs a 20-19 victory they didn’t deserve.

Bernard Foley

Bernard Foley (Photo by Jason McCawley/Getty Images)

The only bright spot was in the 49th minute when Israel Folau somehow managed under intense pressure to slip a pass to winger Alex Newsome who crashed over in the corner to make it 12-10 – that’s as close as the Waratahs came to victory.

But it should be said that Ned Hanigan, one of the most heavily criticised Waratahs among Roarers, was one forward who featured in both attack and defence, and deserved recognition.

The overall salutes belong to the Brumbies, especially the non-stop number eight Lachlan McCaffrey, whose motor mouth frequently niggled the Waratahs into despair.

He has Wallaby written all over him.

Throw in hooker Folau Fainga’a who has scored a try in each of his last five games, but a double last night, and for good measure always found his lineout targets.

An Australian hooker finding targets demands a Wallaby jumper as well, and it was great to see outside centre Tevita Kuridrani back in typical blockbusting action in this World Cup year.

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Long may he be injury free.

And the Brumbies took the honours without one of the best open-side flankers in world rugby David Pocock, and Wallaby prop Allan Alaatoa, both injured.

So Andrew Hore, it was one-way traffic for most of the 80 minutes, and it wasn’t the Waratahs calling the shots as they constantly lost possession, and composure, as promising moves fell apart.

It’s time for the CEO to go back to his closet to do his job, and zip it for anything else.

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