Paul Crawley: Israel Folau backflip should have Dragons fans demanding answers
Paul Crawley: Israel Folau backflip should have Dragons fans demanding answers

Why Dragons should be ashamed by Folau fiasco

How can St George Illawarra fans have faith in their club's board that allowed this Israel Folau fiasco to play out as embarrassingly as it did?

And what does the club now tell the fans in the countdown to the new season?

Sorry, but we stuffed up?

Because they now have a captain in Cameron McInnes who has already signed with their arch enemies Cronulla for next season.

And now they have a coach in Anthony Griffin who has just been totally let down and played for a fool by a board who went to water at the first sign of trouble in the chase to sign Folau.

But forget about this being an argument about whether or not you were in favour or against the Dragons' decision to pursue the controversial cross-code star in the first place.

That is not the issue here.

 

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Anthony Griffin.
Anthony Griffin.

 

And in no way is this about condoning or supporting any of the comments Folau has ever posted on social media about his religious views.

The point here that should really anger and frustrate Dragons fans is that this board, who are supposed to be in charge of setting the standards within, were so naive.

That they allowed it all to get this far before finally realising the damage it had the potential to do to their brand before pulling out.

How could they possibly have expected to play out any differently?

There is no question they have thrown the coach and senior management under the bus to save themselves.

 

 

For the past month everyone who holds any sort of power within the club have been totally aware of the talks with Folau that kicked off over the Christmas break when Griffin met up with Folau in Brisbane.

Now you would think everyone at the club would have been totally prepared for the backlash that was sure to follow - but they went ahead with their plans regardless.

That was until the story got exposed in the media on Tuesday and within 48 hours the board had done a stunning backflip.

It is naive beyond belief.

The damage this will ultimately do to the club going forward remains to be seen.

No doubt Folau will push ahead in his pursuit of an NRL return.

 

The Israel Folau circus continues to roll on. Picture: AAP Image/David Moir
The Israel Folau circus continues to roll on. Picture: AAP Image/David Moir

 

And despite the Dragons decision, those close to the negotiations have no doubt Folau will find another club to take up his fight.

Whether or not the NRL allows it to happen is a different story.

But the Dragons should have been prepared, but they caved in regardless.

It is really another massive blight on their recruitment process but they are not totally to blame here because the board gave them the green light to go for it.

Right up late on Wednesday afternoon everyone at the club was convinced the Dragons were on solid legal ground to take on the NRL over Folau.

But they obviously just didn't have the intestinal fortitude to back their own judgment.

Originally published as Why Dragons should be ashamed by Folau fiasco



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