Haka dis­re­spect­ful: Dowd

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Welling­ton: Craig Dowd has slammed the All Blacks’ dis­re­spect­ful Kapa O Pango haka they dis­played against Ire­land and ques­tioned their at­ti­tude in the de­feat in Chicago. The for­mer All Blacks prop, who won 60 tests caps be­tween 1993 and 2000, said he watched and ‘cringed’ as TJ Per­e­nara led the haka prior to fac­ing Ire­land, whose play­ers formed a fig­ure of eight to honour Anthony Fo­ley, who died last month. Dowd also at­tacked the All Blacks camp for their prepa­ra­tion ahead of the show­down in Chicago. Ire­land se­cured their maiden win over the All Blacks cour­tesy of a 40-29 vic­tory, which was their first in 111 years. Dowd said Ire­land’s tri­umph was ‘a good thing for world rugby’, as they ended the All Blacks’ world record win­ning streak (18) for a tier-one na­tion. But the for­mer Auck­land and Blues prop re­ally took of­fence with the All Blacks’ haka. “I have to say I watched the haka and cringed. Some­one didn’t do their home­work in the All Blacks camp,” Dowd wrote on ESPN.

“Know­ing a lit­tle bit about the Ir­ish men­tal­ity and hav­ing had a 64-test cap vet­eran and ex-Mun­ster coach Anthony Fo­ley die re­cently, with all the play­ers wear­ing black arm­bands and hav­ing a mo­ment’s si­lence for him be­fore the game, and know­ing what that meant to the Ir­ish team and the pub­lic, I thought pulling out the Kapa O Pango haka was dis­re­spect­ful. “I’ve been to fu­ner­als and you do the Ka Mate haka to honour a war­rior and it is dif­fer­ent to do­ing the bat­tle cry, or war cry, of Kapa O Pango which is a more ag­gres­sive chal­lenge. “I thought, ‘you guys haven’t done your re­search here, you haven’t ac­tu­ally thought through the process’.

“It’s not a case of not back­ing them­selves, they are the All Blacks and they should back them­selves.

“But it is be­ing re­spect­ful and I thought the haka choice was dis­re­spect­ful.”

Dowd also said the na­ture of All Blacks’ last visit to Chicago – a 74-6 win over USA – im­pacted on their per­for­mance against Ire­land. “At­ti­tude is ev­ery­thing. At test match level you can talk about all sorts of game plans but it comes down to 15 play­ers hav­ing the right at­ti­tude to go out to im­ple­ment what they have trained all their lives to do,” Dowd wrote on ESPN. “And that was miss­ing in Chicago for the All Blacks.” - Stuff

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