Murray Deaker writes:
Dalton must realise that his use-by date has been and gone. I believe he has made three fundamental errors that mean many sailors and certainly a large number of sports journalists have lost respect for him.
Dalton should never have called a lay-day during the last America’s Cup.
It should not have been his call. It should have been the sole right of Dean Barker to make that call, as skipper. Barker didn’t even know that Dalton had made the call. Dalton made the call for commercial reasons … some of the key sponsors hadn’t arrived in San Francisco and he wanted them to see the final victory. This decision, on its own, is so bad it should have led to his resignation.
Winston Macfarlane was recognised as a much better grinder, being stronger, younger and more focused.
Third, Dalton lost his focus and some of his behaviour off the water in San Francisco, meaning he lost the respect of his team.
If Team New Zealand is to survive it will do so only if Dalton resigns. He has had his day and it is unbelievable that there is no one on the board of Team New Zealand prepared to tell him so.
The decision is one purely for Team New Zealand, except …
If this was a private syndicate, we would have no right to know anything. However, this is a team that revels in the title Team New Zealand, that raises money because it uses the name of our country and that thrives on our support, our patriotism. That comes at a cost. We need to know the facts and we need to know why the next challenge will lead to a success, not another failure.
It is apparent that the Government, John Key and Steven Joyce particularly, have not realised the depth of feeling against Team New Zealand. If the Government funds Team New Zealand under its present leadership and structure, it will pay for it at the polling booths. I could not bring myself to vote for any party supporting the current bunch.
String words, but ones shared by many.
Does Team New Zealand have a future? Unquestionably. But that future must be without the baggage of the past.
There is no question Barker’s days with Team New Zealand are over. Yet no self-respecting man would tolerate the way he has been treated.
I believe Dalton is past it and before his reputation is completely tarnished, he should resign.
Clearly the board needs new direction and strength. This can only happen with a clean-out there as well.
There should be no doubt an the minds of anyone involved in TNZ that the rank and file of New Zealand sports fans now view you as a dysfunctional, unstructured group that has hopefully had its last hand-out from the Government.
I hope they can sort themselves out, but like Deaker I don’t want any taxpayer money going towards them unless they look like a professional focused team that has a very real chance of winning the America’s Cup, and bring it back to NZ with the economic returns it would generate. At present they should be on their own.