Sunday, 4 November 2012

Welcome to Draconia

Quade Cooper’s fine of 60,000 Aussie dollars (with $20,000 suspended) by the ARU last week for bringing the game into disrepute appears to be, on the face of it, fair dinkum.

Fair dinkum, that is, until you consider that a chunk of the fine was for expressing his dislike of a computer game.

Admittedly the bulk of Cooper's fine was related his tweeted comments about the "toxic environment" of Robbie Deans’ Wallabies regime and how it was "destroying" him as a player and person.

However, $10,000 of Cooper's fine (that’s nearly £6,500 in real money) was for describing Wallabies Rugby Challenge, a computer game licensed by the ARU, as “the shittest” game.

On the whole I admit to having little sympathy with sports stars who take to Twitter with ill-informed opinions usually expressed before they have engaged what little grey matter they possess, but even I am struck by the utter absurdity (and dubious legality) of the ARU's punishment in this instance.

Obviously Cooper has had to take it on the chin to avoid completely torpedoing his career, but what kind of precedent does it set?

Forget Australia, Quade - welcome to Draconia.

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