Next, the protesters will work to suspend Britain from the Commonwealth Games. And finally they will try to prevent Britain from taking part in the Moscow Olympics. "The Africans are very determined over this," said de Broglio. "The British can have the Barbarians if they like. The Olympics will be something else."
He outlined the scenario. "Africa will mobilize the new Asian sports confederation. Some Latin American countries have promised to help. Some of the socialist countries, the East Europeans. The question will come up in an IOC meeting early next year at Lake Placid. Let us assume that the IOC refuses to make a decision. Rugby is not an Olympic sport, Britain has not broken any Olympic rules, et cetera.
"In that case, 40 countries go to Moscow and say, 'We stay here, Britain goes. This time, Africans will not punish themselves, as in Montreal. You cannot have the Olympics with Britain.' I think that the IOC will then make a pragmatic decision, as it did in the case of Taiwan. Or maybe Los Angeles should start cutting its losses now. There could be no Olympics in 1984."
Britain is very excited about the Moscow Games—what with world-record holder Sebastian Coe in the 800 meters and Steve Ovett in the 1,500—and de Broglio says it has a last chance to ensure that these athletes will run. A rugby tour of South Africa by the British Lions, the national side, has been scheduled for 1980. "If that is canceled," de Broglio declared, "then Africans may not proceed in the matter of the Barbarians' tour. But they are very angry with British sports administrators, who have been the main obstacle to African wishes on the South African sports question."
In light of all that, one could understand his lack of concern over the poor show at Exeter. Has stopping the Barbarians become a minor objective, and Ramsamy's trip the big assault?
"You've got it," said de Broglio.