Irish Rugby Commentator Calls For 'Overdone' Haka To Be Banned Because It Gives All Blacks An Unfair Advantage
New Zealand has kicked off its Rugby World Cup campaign in stunning fashion after a scrappy 23-13 win over South Africa.
Before everything kicked off, the All Blacks performed their iconic and spine-tingling haka, a ceremonial dance which has been performed by the team for more than 100 years.
While you can usually hear a pin drop during the dance, there was one commentator who had other things on his mind.
Irish writer Ewan MacKenna, who works for sports website Pundit Arena has made the bold request for the haka to be banned because not only is it 'overdone' but it also gives the Kiwis an 'unfair advantage'.
"New Zealand are justifiably big-headed enough without a massaging of their already massive egos," MacKenna wrote.
"Yet even World Rugby have it in their rules that to not stand on your own 10-metre line and watch a bunch stick out their tongues and slap their thighs is worthy of a fine and a telling off.
"Indeed if we are to engage in these cultural activities in rugby, perhaps Ireland's opponents should have to spend a few minutes watching our players sitting around a table in midfield, sipping cups of tea and bemoaning everything from economic migrants to the latest bin charges."
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A very big, bold claim indeed.
The haka is a massive part of New Zealand culture and identity. Nearly every school and university will have their own version and will perform it before each sporting match.
It's used as a way to intimidate their opponent but we're not sure MacKenna's suggestion the Irish do their own version would instil the same terror.
While he mentioned the psychological benefits the haka provides, he also went on to explain how it's beneficial physically.
"There's a practical reason why the Haka shouldn't happen as, while it provides a psychological edge through self-inspiration and via an attempt at opponent intimidation, it also provides a small physical edge as others are forced to stand still and go briefly cold," he said.
"There's another reason too though as there is a huge lack of self-awareness about this. Again there are those who'll say it's native and it is to some, but the majority of New Zealand players haven't been Maori.
"Instead, they descend from forefathers who were actually ruthless oppressors of natives."
Don't hold your breath Ewan, we're pretty sure the haka is here to stay.
Featured Image Credit: PA