Belfast Telegraph

Home News

RTE pundit George Hook slammed for calling Ulster star Jared Payne a "second rate foreign player"

George Hook has come under fire for comments he made about New Zealand-born Jared Payne following Ireland's 23-16 defeat to Wales in Cardiff.

The pundit was trying to point out that Ian Madigan should be playing instead of the Ulster star in the centre for Ireland and then brought up the issue of nationality.

"I'd like to know why Ireland has a problem of picking second rate foreign players," he said

"Ian Madigan has been appallingly treated."

"The point is, you have a national policy or you don't have a national policy. Madigan should be at inside centre and he should be playing number 12 week in week out."

He later said: "Jared Payne is not good enough to play at 13, it has nothing to do with nationality.

Fellow analyst Shane Horgan responded: "You brought the nationality issue up George.

"Jared Payne has come over, he's become Irish qualified. He's played for Ulster for three years. He's committed himself to Ireland and I think he should be treated with respect, like any Irish player."

Hook's comments sparked a lot of reaction on Twitter yesterday evening.

One user wrote: "Disgraceful & disrespectful comments from #georgehook today about someone who put on a green jersey &represented Ireland."

"George Hook will always blame Ulster for Irish pitfalls. He forgets his hero ROG was born in America. At least it is his last 6N," posted another.

Another angry fan said: "George Hook is the Jeremy Clarkson of #RTErugby , he just says what he wants because he know he'll get away with it."

Irish Independent

Belfast Telegraph Digital


From Belfast Telegraph