Lenihan to "have a chat" with Matt
Lions scrum-half Matt Dawson was left red-faced and facing possible sanctions after criticising the touring management party just hours before today's outstanding 29-13 first Test victory over Australia.
Dawson was an unused replacement in Brisbane, although coach Graham Henry's decision not to throw him into the fray was nothing to do with the player's controversial views, manager Donal Lenihan claiming they had not yet been seen.
Although Lenihan refused to discuss the article, Dawson's England coach Clive Woodward hinted that if he were in charge of the Lions party, the player would be punished.
"It's going to be serious," Woodward told Sky Sports. If he's written the things we've been told about then he'll be feeling pretty stupid now.
"But after such a magnificent victory they want to think about that and not about anything negative he's said.
"Hopefully they'll (the Lions management) have a word with him and then get on with next week."
In his Daily Telegraph 'Tour Diary', Dawson launched a blistering assault on individual members of the Lions management team, claiming he 'wasn't inspired' by Henry and that Lenihan treated the squad 'like children'.
Dawson claimed the 'mindless' training routines were too long and severe and the squad were being 'flogged' just so the coaches could say they had done everything they could if the results went against them.
He also criticised England coaches Andy Robinson and Phil Larder for being 'too distant' adding that their training with the Lions differed from their approach to the national set-up.
Dawson's comments backed up the rumours of disharmony which had been seeping out of the Lions party over the past few days, with the finger being pointed at Henry, the Kiwi whose appointment as Lions coach was widely condemned.
However, today's result will do much to quell the fire, with Dawson now looking foolish after one of the most stunning performances the Lions have ever produced.
"I haven't seen the article but we will have a chat with Matt and see what is going on," said Lenihan. "I would be amazed if this was true.
"As far as comments about the spirit in the squad, you just need to look at today's performance. We did all our talking on the rugby pitch."
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