LARRY RYAN: One rule for rugby’s elite, another for the paupers

Outrage fits us like a spring jacket and is as easily slipped on as off.

How noisily we harrumphed last week when the Premier League chairman let slip a lifetime of suppressed annoyance that the reins of football were tugged from England’s grasp. Remember how we huffed until old interests gave the cricketers we’d just discovered a shot at the 2015 World Cup.

And then, with nary a trace of irony in our bearing, we settle as usual into the luxurious comforts of the cosiest cartel of all; the Six Nations Championship.

How fitting the final ‘Super Saturday’ kicked off with Italy-Scotland — two bald men fighting over a comb but settling for a wooden spoon to slather their domes in the regenerating spoils of mediocrity.

In defeat, the Scots know someone will always pass them a hat and the day will always stay fine.

And we’d enjoy the same birthright if we regressed to the dark days — a prospect that can’t be written off.

No wonder there is no will to shake up this stale, incestuous competition with its trophy, cup, crown or quaich for everyone. Not a peep from ourselves about the closed shop — after all, like many international money rackets, we provide the HQ.

The tournament should long ago have expanded into a genuine European championship, with at least a playoff to allow the Nations Cup winner a shot at entry. Better still, automatic promotion and relegation.

Tom Dunne might have meant a more Western place or an elusive dame, but Something Happens summed up this caper a long time ago; Forget Georgia. While you’re at it, ignore Romania and Russia too.


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