David Pocock and Wendell Sailor were among many who condemned Campese’s Tweet about Fairfax writer Georgina Robinson, who is covering the autumn Tests having replaced veteran rugby correspondent Greg Growden.

“Why does the smh get a girl to write about rugby,” a tweet from his official account said. “Growden who was a great jornio (sic) and now we have someone who has no idea about the game!”

Growden left in a recent round of redundancies at Fairfax.

Campese has rallied to fix the situation with questionable success.

“I was trying to say is that the coach is under pressure and sometimes males give it to the coach as some females go a lot easier on them,” he tweeted.

Australian rep in union and league Sailor commented on the initial tweet: “Well good morning to u Campo & i have to say u are on ur own with this comment it’s 2012 champ”

Wallaby flanker David Pocock, who is to return from injury this weekend in Wales, wrote: “Really sad to see journos attacked based on their gender. Or a grown woman referred to as a ‘girl’ #destroyingthejoint.”

Campese also tweeted, probably not helping either: “Sometimes it is good to see some people react to thing you say. Please relax and see the light side of life. All press are the same.”

Federal Sports Minister Kate Lundy reprimanded the record try-scorer: “Female players, mums, sisters, partners of #rugby players, in fact everyone expects better from @DavidCampese11”, she tweeted.

Campese finally came to his senses, saying, “yes I am sorry for the comment”.

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