The newspapers are relishing reporting the updates on two boys who were banned from competing in the Maadi Cup rowing regatta after riding on the baggage carousel at Auckland Airport.
These are the boys with over-protective dads who went to court to prevent school authorities from punishing them by imposing the rowing bans.
Now – it transpires – they have missed out on being named for the national rowing trial at Lake Karapiro near Cambridge from April 12-18 or the South Island trial from April 10-12 at Lake Ruataniwha near Twizel.
Alf understands these rowing trials have something to do with boats and oars rather than heated argument.
The NZ Herald today tells us:
St Bede’s College students Jordan Kennedy, 16, and Jack Bell, 17, were dumped from the school’s rowing team for breaching Auckland Airport security on March 20 after riding the Jetstar carousel at the domestic terminal.
The school banned them from competing at the Maadi Cup regatta at Lake Karapiro, near Cambridge.
But the boys’ fathers Shane Kennedy and Antony Bell were granted an urgent injunction from the High Court at Christchurch to allow their sons to row.
However, the pair’s names weren’t among nearly 100 high school pupils listed as New Zealand junior and under 18 South Island team trialists on its website on Sunday, The Press reported.
The news media should come to Alf for some comment, which would be generously and eagerly provided.
For now, they have gone elsewhere and encountered people keen to say nothing.
Shane Kennedy and Rowing New Zealand declined to comment on the team selection.
A spokeswoman for Rowing New Zealand said in an email that senior staff would not be reached for comment.
Mind you, it’s fair to say Kennedy was not completely silent.
Kennedy told The Press he would not speak to the newspaper again if it published a story about how the boys were not listed as trialists.
We get a bit of background from the Herald to remind us that:
Police and the Aviation Security Service (Avsec) gave the pair formal warnings after the prank, which happened shortly after they arrived from Christchurch on March 20.
Crew mates encouraged the boys to jump on the carousel. One boy filmed their antics. The other boys were not punished.
The students had been left unsupervised while the coaches went to pick up a rental van.
It has since been revealed that the row would be settled out of court, one of the boy’s parents said last week.
The row referred to on this occasion, of course, is not the sort that involves boats or oars.
As for the threat from Shane Kennedy not to speak to newspapers again if they published this story – well, Alf can only assume the editors were willing to forego the pleasure of future chats with him.
They preferred to get the story into print.
Alf imagines Shane Kennedy will be disinclined to talk to him, too, on the strength of this blog post.
As threats go, it is not a powerful one.