Blue Bulls Rugby Union
The Blue Bulls Rugby Union and Blue Bulls Company are saddened by the news that Professor Fritz Eloff passed away on Thursday, September 5th, 2013. The BBRU and BBC extend condolences to his family and wish them strength during this difficult time.
He leaves behind two daughters and two grandchildren.
93 year old Prof. Eloff served as the President of the Northern Transvaal Rugby Union for 26 years. He was also a member of SA Rugby’s executive committee for 30 years and he served as the acting president in 1993 after the passing of Dr. Danie Craven.
He was Chairman of the International Rugby Board from 1989 to 1990. He was a lifelong honorary member of the Blue Bulls as well as SA Rugby, where he served a term of co-deputy president after unification in 1992. He was elected president of the Northern Transvaal Rugby Union in 1965 and in 1968 managed the Springbok team touring France.
As a player, Prof. Eloff played lock, prop and loose forward for the Blue Bulls during the years 1944 to 1950 (8 games). He also participated in the Springbok trials held at Loftus Versfeld in 1949. During his studies in England in 1951, he played for the London Harlequins.
He coached the first team of the University of Pretoria (Tukkies) from 1954-1957. He was equally famous as an academic as he was as a rugby administrator.
Prof. Eloff, who was born on 18 May 1920, obtained his BSc degree at Tukkies in 1939 after matriculating at Pietersburg High School in 1936. In 1942 he received his MSc (cum laude), also at the University of Pretoria. In 1943 he was appointed lecturer in the Department of Zoology at UP and obtained his Doctorate in 1946 also cum laude. In 1954 he was promoted to Professor and Head of the Department of Zoology at Tukkies.
Prof. Eloff received numerous awards in his lifetime including the State President’s award: Order of exceptional service: Class 1 Gold (1987) and the State President Sports Merit award (1988). He was Chairman of the National Parks Board for more than 16 years.
More information on funeral arrangements will be released later.
The South African Rugby Union (SARU) on Thursday extended its condolences to the family of former SARU president and chairman, Professor Fritz Eloff, who passed away in Pretoria on Thursday.
He was 93.
Prof. Eloff was a member of the former South African Rugby Board’s executive committee for 30 years and he served as the acting president of the newly unified South African Rugby Football Union in 1993 after the passing of Dr. Danie Craven.
He was a lifelong honorary member of the Blue Bulls as well as of SARFU.
He was also Chairman of the International Rugby Board from 1989 to 1990.
“Prof. Fritz Eloff was one of the great minds of his time and served with integrity and dignity in many roles in rugby,” said SARU president Oregan Hoskins.
“He was highly respected by the world rugby fraternity, as was demonstrated by the numerous awards he received for his services to the game from all over the world.
“He played an integral part in the unity of the game in South Africa as well and his role as an administrator will be remembered for a long time. South African rugby is poorer for the passing of one of its finest administrators.”