Thinking and talking about rugby every day for 50+ years
10 June 2015
My story on the late Jerry Collins having to front for a TV interview straight after an All Blacks World Cup defeat in 2003 has been picked up and run on the New Zealand Herald. As a result of that the All Blacks media manager from that New Zealand team has sent his version of events. I thank Matt McIlraith and publish his comments.
"As the All Black media manager of the time as referred to by Keith, I remember the said incident well.
"There had been huge issues through that RWC about the All Black coach refusing to do the immediate post-game TV interviews but it wasn't within the existing tournament rules of the time, so he was within his rights to refuse, albeit as unwise as this course of action was.
"The rule was changed after 2003. In this instance, when John refused, Jerry, who was in ear shot of his rather terse reply within the dressing room, jumped up and said he would do it.
"A number of the players did this throughout that year when the head coach refused to do things, this was certainly not the only time, but it did reflect well on the leadership skills Jerry already had, and the fact that he cared, while perhaps reflecting less well on the head coach, although each individual will draw their own opinion on that.
"As Keith recalled, John did front the formal post game press conference. The women Keith referred to that Jerry went and saw after were his mother and another family member (I think his sister), whom had religiously waited for him outside after each of the games at that tournament.
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