Vast majority of Ulster Rugby Supporters Club "disappointed" or "appalled" with decision to sack Jackson and Olding
The supporters club has concluded that it will not be protesting the decision.
A survey from Ulster Rugby Supporters Club has concluded that almost half of its members are disappointed at the IRFU and Ulster Rugby's decision to sack Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding.
The poll was run as a response to a newspaper advertisement from 'concerned fans' requesting that the two players not be reinstated following the conclusion of their nine-week trial, in which they were acquitted of all charges.
In total, 390 members of the club (42%) responded to the survey offering five different options.
The results were as follows:
- 7 members (4%) - "Pleased they are gone, they have brought disgrace to Ulster Rugby. See you on Saturday."
- 64 (16%) - "Move on, we are a Supporters’ Club and we support the club not individual players. See you on Saturday."
- 176 (45%) - "Disappointed but not surprised by the outcome. URSC to write to IRFU/Ulster expressing same." (NB: many respondents changed "disappointed" to "appalled")
- 80 (21%) - "Appalled at the outcome – protest at the Glasgow game. See you outside on Saturday."
- 52 (13%) - "Appalled by the outcome. Boycott Glasgow game. Won’t see you on Saturday."
Commenting on the results, the URSC said: "The [URSC] Committee also noted that whilst a third of members were appalled and wanted some form of protest, it was the Committee’s view that such action, whilst cathartic and no doubt headline-grabbing, would have little impact on the hierarchy of either the IRFU or Ulster Rugby.
"Protest would also likely adversely affect the remaining playing squad for the last crucial matches of the season and would be disrespectful to players like Tommy Bowe making their final home appearance.
"The URSC will therefore be writing to IRFU/Ulster Rugby next week to express members’ considerable dissatisfaction and disgust at the recent turn of events.
Concluding, the statement read:"Finally, URSC notes that Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding have apologised fulsomely for their behaviour which they have admitted was below acceptable standards. The URSC would like to thank the players for their on-field efforts for both Ulster and Ireland and wish them well in their rugby futures, wherever that may be."
On Monday, French club Clermont Auvergne denied that they were keen on signing Paddy Jackson.
Clermont head coach Franck Azéma dismissed reports that they were in preliminary negotiations with Jackson as "false information".
"There is no contact between Paddy Jackson and the club and no desire on our part to engage his services," he said.
Ulster Rugby CEO Shane Logan also said on Monday that he doesn't think the pair will play for Ulster or Ireland again but denied that sponsorship pressure had any impact on the decision to revoke the duo's contracts.