I too think Jake White was a genius in his approach to the timing.
I’d go further, and suggest that his timing was planned WAY in advance.
It takes a good year to merely WRITE a book, let alone see it to print. This book has necessarily been in the works for — probably — the past three or four years. I think he’s a clever enough man to have been able to foresee the endgame years ago.
I’d guess that Mr White may have fanned certain flames, knowing that there’d be consequences. He’s no fool. If he says ‘X’, and he KNOWS that one of his opponents in the rugby world will say ‘Y’, and he KNOWS that the exchange will be controversial, then hell… why not say ‘X’ for strategic reasons?
The guy’s a manipulator. That’s his job. It’s what he does best. He’s also a strategic genius. That’s how the Boks won the world cup. I don’t think the bloke set a foot wrong in his entire campaign to get the Boks there. Including the so-called missteps he took in fielding ‘poor’ teams. The subtle art of misdirection at work, no?
And I think there’s a further element to his strategy and timing. He’s not JUST looking for personal gain. He’s making sure that he sets the bar for the next coach. He’s really done an almost mystical job of setting very high stakes, and demonstrating to the world (and South Africa, for what it’s worth) the consequences of his successor fumbling the ball.
He’s checkmated SA rugby good and solid. If they put an idiot in his place, or continue with their own idiocy, there’s a smiling Jake White holding a trophy on a book cover for them to be humiliated by in the privacy of their own consciences. Sheer genius.
The photo is used under a Creative Commons ‘Attribution’ license. Thanks to Dplanet for the pic.