Meyer to battle SA teams before Poms

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According to Jan de Koning and Rugby365, Heyneke Meyer’s first test won’t be against the Poms, but against local rugby franchises and unions.

Rugby365

Heyneke Meyer has hit his first major stumbling block since being appointed Springbok coach earlier this year, with the revelation  of a public stand-off over how much money the players will be paid.

Rugby365 can reveal that, for the first time ever, the five South African franchises are demanding to be reimbursed by the South African Rugby Union when players are called up to the national team.

This has resulted in a stand-off between the South African Rugby Players Association, which represents the interests of all professional rugby players in South Africa, and SARU over how much the players will receive.

SARPA confirmed in a statement that the remuneration of Springbok players for 2012 remains “unresolved” and will now be referred to final and binding arbitration.

Mediation, which took place earlier this week under the auspices of Advocate Nic Treurnicht, was unsuccessful and no agreement could be reached.

Piet Heymans, the SARPA Chief Executive, told this website in an interview, that the previous “compensation model” for the national team players came to end in 2011.

“Although we came to an agreement about the amount available to the Springboks, the franchises are now demanding a cut of that [when the Boks are on national duty],” Heymans told this website.

This is the first time franchises are demanding to be reimbursed and with the Boks away from their unions and franchises for about three months, it will have a serious impact on their earning power with the national team.

Many of the players expected to be involved with the national team had signed contracts with their franchises before they realised this financial bomb would hit them and they are now tied into those contracts.

The SARPA boss said he found it surprising that the franchises can wield so much power over SARU.

It is not the kind of issues the new Bok coach, Meyer, needed at the start of his four-year tenure.

“It is disappointing that the dispute could not be resolved at mediation and that it need to be referred to arbitration,” said Heymans, who added that the dispute is not about more money for the national team, but how the agreed budget should be divided.

“We have an agreement on the amount available for the remuneration of the Springbok players in 2012, but there is a dispute about the allocation now that the franchises are demanding a cut. It is therefore not a case of wanting more money, but how to divide the amount agreed upon.”

Heymans felt it is of utmost importance that the matter is resolved before the three-match Test series against England in June.

“This is a crucial year for the Springboks, with a new management team, and it’s important for players to be happy on and off the field.

“We are hoping that the arbitration can take place during the second part of May and that we can have finality before the start of the test series against England.”

SARU CEO  Jurie Roux was confident that the stand-off would be resolved “soon”.

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16 COMMENTS

  1. Now the franschises are taking it a bit far. Yes I understand they lose valuable players for a while, but it helps them blood youngsters in the CC and build future teams. Win win for me, the best play for the boks, second stringers get valuable experience and playing time, which helps come super15.

    So what exactly do the franschises want? The income their players have to take hits in a loong international season to earn?

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  2. Reply to Aldo @ 7:19 am:

    My understanding of this is that SARU has a budget X to pay players for and when they represent the Boks – their salaries if you will.

    It seems their teams now wants a cut of this? Or am I reading this totally wrong?

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  3. Reply to Morné @ 8:48 am:

    That is how I read it. Apparently for the fact that the players are not available during the tests. I guess they are talking about availability for training and possible injuries during the tests.

    Fair or not? Merit in both cases.

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  4. Morne, that is the way I read it as well. They want a cut of what rightfully belongs to the player.

    Deon I cant see the merits for the franschises case, but then Im from PTA, have a lekker baard, drink too much redwine in the winter and too much beer in summer and spend my free time baking, yes baking. So what do I know.

    Must be the Cape media behind this. :soek:

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  5. Reply to Deon @ 9:18 am: Reply to Aldo @ 9:26 am:

    I would assume then that up and till now franchises contracted players at specific amounts which stayed the same (without any compensation) whether they were available for Currie Cup or not?

    In that case I do believe they should get some compensation but I don’t think taking part of the players cut is fair on the players.

    You will soon have a stand-off between players and their own unions…

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  6. Reply to Cosa die BLOUBOK @ 10:15 am:

    Jis Oompie,

    Gaan goed. Sukkel net om alles deesdae in te pas. Rugby aan die gang. Skryf Woensdag eksamen vir CPA.

    Gelukkig ja. Vandag eintlik ‘n bietjie homesick. Ons het ‘n regte Kaapse wintersdag. Konstante reen en triestig. Enigste verskil is mens loop notsteeds met kortbroek en Tshirts rond.

    Hoes dinge aan jou kant?

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  7. Reply to DavidS @ 12:46 pm:

    Unions claiming money from the players he picks is certainly going to leave them brimming from ear-to-ear I am sure. Not to mention how all the unions are no doubt all pulling together to help Heyneke and the Boks.

    In fact I am sure Heyneke is loving the prospect of a stand-off between players selected for the Boks and their unions a month out from his first test series.

    But don’t let your prejudice against the cape media cloud good judgment – by all means – carry on, there is nothing like a decent serving of idiocy for lunch on a Saturday.

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  8. Dawie, I agree that this luckily should not be Heynecke’s problem, as he is a good enough motivator and coach to rise above this crap.

    However, this is newsworthy and not quite as bad as the rest of the cape media bias.

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  9. Hehe Deon, I see Im back to being called Also. Ahh the good old days, Morne I didnt miss your comment on brannasnacht, those we the days. Even Logan wonders what she missed.

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  10. Btw, wie de moer is watte? After 4 games this weekend he has scored 27 points. Does he want to mess up my launch to first place at the end?

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