The listening device found hidden in a chair at the All Blacks team hotel in Sydney had a battery life of about three days and was still operational when discovered, according to an NZME report.
The new information – gleaned from a “well-placed Australian source” by NZME – suggests the All Blacks were the intended target of the device and narrows down the range of possible suspects.
The lifespan of the device’s batteries appears to discredit speculation that previous guests at the InterContinental Hotel in Double Bay could have been the targets, not the New Zealand side.
Australian Rugby Union chief executive Bill Pulver has categorically cleared the ARU from any involvement with the device and described its discovery the day before last weekend’s Bledisloe Cup opener as an “unnecessary distraction”.
He also revealed that New Zealand Rugby chief executive Steve Tew had shown him a picture of the bug at an annual board dinner on the Friday before the match in Sydney.
“Literally at about 10 o’clock that night Steve Tew showed me a photograph of this funny little device that looked like two batteries with a little wire, pretty innocuous,” Pulver said.
“I’ve never heard of any sports team sweeping rooms for listening devices so I was surprised by that revelation as well,” he said.
“I’m not going to describe the All Blacks as paranoid, it’s up to them to run their team the way they want to but I can tell you we don’t sweep rooms. To think of listening devices in the world of rugby is not something we would expect and it’s not something I’ve ever heard of.
You’re not paranoid if someone is actually listening.
Heh, classic head games. It won’t help the Aussies one bit.