I guess I should be more specific for those of you outside New Zealand, I mean that the comments are generally demeaning about the ability and form of a player or team from south of Waikato. This appears to have a lot to do with the origins of the commentators - Auckland and Hamilton generally.
I am sure that this is not at all a problem overseas, where all commentators are bound to be fair minded individuals with high personal standards of honesty and integrity!
But we in Canterbury have noticed, and frankly... we have been hurt by it. (No really, if it wasn't for the 3 Super 12 wins and the Ranfurly shield, I would be sobbing my little heart out right now as I type!)
Of course the Crusaders didn't do themselves any favours in '98 and '99 having to win the last 5 or 7 straight to scrape into the finals. But this year as they steadily made their way through the season, any good comments were generally tempered by a certain amount of reluctance on the part of the commentators.
It was almost as if they were afraid that if New Zealand rugby succeeded without the name "Auckland Blues" being involved that life would end - and maybe everybody might work out that John Hart wasn't a good ABs coach!
So you can imagine my surprise when I was listening to John Drake calling the "B" game two weekends ago - Canterbury's lesson on how to give a hiding, with Southland their "lovely" assistants.
During this game I heard Mr. Drake (my apologies to him if it was some other loser) say that although the Canterbury team was playing very well indeed, it wasn't any real surprise as they were the Crusaders in disguise.
Damn-it, it appears that we have gone from too inconsistent, to far too consistent!!
What does it take to please these guys?