Rugby legend Dan Carter was in town yesterday. His timing on the eve of Ireland vs New Zealand in Chicago guaranteed a big turnout. His recent headlines over a doping controversy guaranteed rugby would not be the first question for gathered media.
He quickly addressed the doping saying as he had in the subsequent investigation that there was nothing to see here and could we all move along.
The problem with TUE’s or therapeutic use exemptions is that they are all mixed up with doping to enhance performance. Whether in fact pain relief is indeed performance enhancing is a point that will be debated for a long time into the future but in the case of Carter there was found to have been no technical wrong doing and so the case has been closed.
Sport can be a brutal game when the time to move on comes in a players career. Carter was joined yesterday by Ronan O’Gara, both of whom would have been central to the Chicago game a few short years ago but who are now absent from the windy city and playing a game of charity Rugby Golf at Dun Laoghaire Golf Club instead.
It was fun, it was for a good cause raising money for children’s hospitals and it was great for raising awareness of an Irish Financial service software firm called SoftCo who were launching their brand new and very impressive looking platform SoftCo10.
Sport does that well. SoftCo also sponsors Monkstown Hockey Club and in associating with sport they have reached out to a new and much wider audience than might normally have an interest in procurement and accounts software.
Not all of the new audience will be buyers but enough might be to make this a smart move. SoftCo’s name and brand is splashed across the national and online media today and that’s a winner for a company that is proud of its Irish roots but very much playing on a global stage.
Oh and when it came to the Rugby Golf Carter took an early lead over O’Gara and never gave it up. Hopefully Joe Schmidt and the Irish team won’t take that as a portent when they wake up in their Trump Hotel in Chicago this morning and prepare for the Captain’s Run in Soldier Field.