May 22, 2021.
Mark Robinson, CEO NZ Rugby.
100 Molesworth Street, Wellington.
I get it. I know it’s been an ugly few weeks. I know that every Tom, Dick, and Harriet has been texting and ringing you at all hours of the day, pleading this way and that, for you to make a final call on the Silver Lake deal. I know you’ve needed one of those special battery packs that you carry around to charge up your phone when the battery gets low, and you’ve been in so many meetings that you accidentally used your wife’s name when you were talking to Brent Impey the other day.
I know it grinds that everyone has an opinion. Honestly, there can only be a handful of people in this country who are sufficiently-informed about the business side of your sport, who understand the implications of a private equity deal with Silver Lake versus an alternative with Forsyth Barr, as well as the cultural and social elements that are unique to rugby in New Zealand. It doesn’t stop them from charging around the place making bold statements and calling up The Herald, does it? Everyone’s an expert.
But here’s the thing, Mark.
I’m worried you’ve been led astray. You’ve been distracted. You are running the risk of being blinded by all of this fancy private equity Wolf of Wall Street smack, and missing out on inking the single-most important deal in New Zealand Rugby today.
Mark. You really, really, really need to re-sign Scott Robertson.
I know I might seem biased. I’m a Canterbury man through and through. And it’s easy for everyone outside of Crusaders country to roll their eyes every time we win a competition. It’s become one of those inevitabilities in life, eh? The Crusaders winning another title. Scott Robertson breakdancing. It’s as predictable as taxes.
But just because we’ve become normalised to Scott Robertson lunging and whirling, spinning and worming in celebration across the steaming Canterbury turf, doesn’t mean he’ll be here forever.
He’s not a spiteful guy. Yes, he’s a bit unusual. He might not be cut from that slick, polished, and dare-I-say DULL template New Zealand Rugby appears to value. But sometimes different is good. Weird is good. And though I really don’t expect Razor’s big on grudges, he's off contract. And we all know he was disappointed not to get the All Blacks job.
So, then; this is my plea to you. Re-sign Razor. Pay whatever it costs. See if Silverlake can chuck in an extra few million if that’s what you need to get him over the line.
Because as painful as these last few weeks might have been for everyone with an interest in New Zealand rugby... can you just imagine how it might feel in a few years' time watching Razor doing the worm having just defeated the All Blacks?