All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has explained why it took five days for the New Zealand Rugby Union to come forward about the alleged bugging of the world champions’ meeting room in Sydney.
Police are investigating the delay after a listening device was found on Monday hidden in a chair at the Intercontinental hotel in Double Bay during a routine security check.
It wasn’t reported to police until Saturday, hours before the All Blacks’ Bledisloe Cup opener against the Wallabies at ANZ Stadium.
Superintendent Brad Hodder said “any delay in any investigation’s always tough but we’ll look at that information”.
Hansen said All Blacks management decided it was best to wait for NZRU chief Steve Tew to arrive in Sydney from the Rio Olympics before taking the matter further.
“The reason that we didn’t go there straight away was because we went through a process with the hotel and our CEO was away at the Olympics,” Hansen said after the All Blacks beat the Wallabies 42-8 in a record-breaking performance at ANZ Stadium on Saturday night.
“He arrived and he needed to be spoken to and fully briefed on it.
“Once he was fully briefed, he said `righto we need to take this to the police'”
As an ex-policeman himself, Hansen said he could understand authorities being frustrated.
“Whether it was right or wrong, it’s what’s happened so we all have to accept that and deal with it,” he said.
Supt Hodder said police didn’t have a theory about who planted the device – and nor does Hansen or the All Blacks.
“Lots of people are speculating about who’s done it and who hasn’t and I don’t think that’s fair because no one knows who’s done it and obviously there’s plenty of people who could do it,” Hansen said.
“So I think until the enquiry’s done by the police, we should sit back and that’s it, let them do their job and certainly not speculate on who planted it there because no one knows.
“We certainly don’t know.”
As evident by the All Blacks’ biggest-ever win on home soil, Hansen said his world champion side wasn’t distracted by the pre-game sideshow – “more shocked”.
“It’s not something that we wanted, bit it happened,” he said.
“It’s like an injury, isn’t it. You’ve got to deal with it and it’s not in your control.
“But how you react is in your control and we’ve just got on with our work and passed it over to the powers that be and they’ll deal with it.”
Wallabies coach Michael Cheika said his team wasn’t bothered by the explosive revelation either.
“I don’t think anyone accused us of putting it there, did they? It’s got nothing to do with us,” Cheika said.