Kiwi TV show foots Samoa's fine
September 30, 2011
Alesana Tuilagi was believed to be the guilty party © Getty Images
Samoa's five-figure fine for wearing an unauthorised mouthguard in their Pool D clash against Fiji has been footed by a New Zealand television show.
The current affairs show Campbell Live will pay the IRB the NZ$10,000 fine levied at the Islanders. The show's frontman John Campbell was said to be aghast when he heard of the heavy fine - believed to have been levied at Alesana Tuilagi - and set up at Ponsonby Road sausage sizzle to raise the necessary funds along with a generous donation from an unnamed business.
"Ten thousand for wearing an incorrect mouthguard seems like a hell of a lot to me," Campbell told the Dominion Post. "Manu Samoa don't have a spare 10k - if they had a spare 10k they would also have all of their best players in New Zealand."
England recently breached IRB rules but did not incur a fine - instead opting to suspend two of their coaching team. And citing this incident - Campbell quoted from the cult film Withnail and I before highlighting the intense schedule which has caused such controversy in the current global gathering.
"It's free to those who can afford it, but very expensive to those who can't... rugby is just starting to look like that isn't it?" Campbell said. "We don't want an Upstairs-Downstairs situation in our national sport.
"I guess people felt like the tide was turning against Samoa. The minnows do it quite hard. Namibia are home already - that just doesn't seem quite right."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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