The Brumbies are chasing up to $25,000 from Sharks coach Jake White through the courts after the South African coach walked out on the club halfway through a four-year deal.
It is understood White was served papers in Canberra on the Friday before the Sharks’ clash with the Brumbies on May 10, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
According to documents lodged in the ACT Magistrates Court, the amount is understood to be the final portion of an estimated $200,000 White owed the Brumbies after violating a non-compete clause in his contract with the Australian province.
It is understood the balance of that amount was paid by the Sharks some time in late February or early March.
Under the terms of his agreement with the Brumbies, White was prohibited from coaching another Super Rugby side until the end of next year..
He announced his decision to leave the club last September, two seasons into his four-year deal, after missing out on the Wallabies head coaching role.
Less than a month later, the Durban-based Sharks announced White as their director of rugby. White, now in New Zealand with the squad, was contacted for comment.
”Yes, we are in dispute with Jake White but we cannot comment further as it’s a matter before the courts,” Brumbies chief executive Doug Edwards said.
White took the Brumbies to the Super Rugby final in his second year in charge and has taken the Sharks to the top of this year’s competition after less than eight months at the helm.
In a television interview three days before the Sharks’ dour 16-9 loss to the Brumbies, White said he took the Brumbies job in 2011 after then-ARU chief executive John O’Neill indicated the Wallabies coaching role could go to a another foreigner after Robbie Deans served out his two-year extension.
That same week he told Fairfax Media that ”the landscape changed” when he was overlooked by the new ARU administration.
”When I arrived in Australia three national team coaches were foreign coaches. When I decided to leave, there were none left,” he said. ”When I was living in Canberra, I bought a house, I moved to Australia. I’m the kind of guy who you’re either in or don’t do it.
”The Brumbies song goes: ‘Proud to be Australian with a Brumby on my chest.’
”I didn’t go quiet when that part of the song was sung. I’m an Aussie, mate. That’s why it was difficult to go back; my wife Lindy cried when I told her. In the past, coaching was the priority. But the landscape changed and, selfishly or unselfishly, going to back South Africa suited me.”