Home Columnists Human nature, or blind stupidity?

Human nature, or blind stupidity?


I am fascinated every day on how human beings seemingly go out of their way to derail any efforts to be successful.

It reminds me of a line in a movie, Terminator 2 to be exact, where Arnie tells young John Connor after witnessing two kids playing with guns and fighting; “It is in your nature to destroy yourself”.

Prophetic words specifically if we apply it to rugby and more specifically, South African rugby.

Internationally of course one could easily look at the IRB’s aim to turn rugby into a truly global sport.  But then we witness how World Cups are awarded and the how the (so-called) processes are followed and it is quite simple to see why rugby globally is only competitive between 6 to possibly 8 teams of a total of well over 100 member nations.

In South Africa the challenges are even more significant as we have to consistently deal with government interference and how certain individuals want to deport Springbok rugby players who has been in the country for over 6 years.

But purely from a rugby administration perspective I am puzzled as to how, or why, we consistently limit ourselves from becoming a truly powerful rugby nation.

Of course most of it comes down to power struggles within rugby administration but given how South African rugby is structured and the decision making bodies are formed or managed, it is fascinating to note that some unions seemingly make decisions to the detriment of their own unions!

In 2009 the Bulls were hailed as the best provincial or club team in the world, and arguably the best Bulls team in the history of the union.  Rightly so I believe.

The Bulls have basically dominated the new millennium on the local front and is still the only team from South Africa to win the Super rugby title – twice actually in 3 years.

The majority of their players are first choice Springboks too, who in itself have basically won everything they could wish to win in the past 3 to 4 years.

Their structures and depth is the envy of other unions and for now, it seems that all this will not change in the near future either.

But it could…  And it has in the past…

Yesterday I read how Cheeky Watson is hoping to have something concrete from SA Rugby, or in writing with regards to the Kings and their future as a franchise, before the end of March.

Importantly the article also made mention of how elections for the new position of President of SA Rugby is coming up soon too.

Predictably the comments that followed centred around how the Kings should not expect hand-out’s, how they must fight their way to Super rugby recognition and how they will be an embarrassment to South African rugby.

‘The more things change,’ I thought…

Here we have a union like the Bulls, who is generally regarded as not only being the best in South Africa, but indeed the best provincial franchise in the world!  Yet not even 8 to 10 years ago (when rugby was already a professional sport), this very same union was on the brink of total collapse.

For a period of about 3 years as we entered the new millennium the very same, all conquering Bulls could not even make the top 8 of the Currie Cup competition, behind unions like the Pumas, Boland, Griquas and the Falcons.

Their captain (Joost) slammed the coach (Heyneke Meyer) in public and through the media as being the reason the union experienced their worst season(s) in 65 years.

Players had to take pay-cuts of between 45% and 55%.

Senior players either walked out, or were not offered contracts – some of them even entertaining to join unions like the Pumas in a ‘anything but the Bulls’ type of attitude.

There were accusations of marginalising coloured and black players (a nice way of saying there were accusations of racism).

Predictably they never featured in the local Currie Cup, and hit an ultimate low when they lost 11 out of 11 matches in the Super 12 in 2002.

This under the management at the time in some way or form or capacity of Heyneke Meyer, and (now) CEO of the Bulls, Barend van Graan, who of course is still there and now local heroes.

And just look at them now.

Not even 10 years ago minnow unions like the Falcons, Boland, SWD and Pumas were real contenders for Currie Cup semi-finals, and the Bulls on the brink of disaster or total collapse.  Ironically the Lions were a massive powerhouse at the time too…  Today, unions like the Falcons cannot afford to pay players, Boland fighting one battle after the next, and the Bulls – well they are on the crest of a magnificent wave.

If all of this is possible, why do we continue to marginalise ourselves and each other?

I guess what I am asking is how do we measure which teams and unions are deserve certain allocations they are allowed, and which unions or teams don’t?

Why do we marginalise ourselves and each other when the margin between being on top, and being at the bottom is not that far apart at all?

Do we just allow the cycles to carry on as they have been for many decades?  Or do we perhaps need to look at creating a methodology and structure to spread risk and wealth for the benefit of the game?

Will it even benefit the game?

I don’t know, but what I do know is that we are busy destroying ourselves, and we are seemingly content with it.

Maybe old Arnie is right, it is simply in our nature.

Leave a comment


  1. Their is always a wheel that is turning. Sometimes that wheel turns fast and you are at the bottom very soon other times it turns low and it takes long for you to move to the bottom, but what is a fact that wheel is turning.

    The problem here is that some people see provincialism as something bad. The also see it as supporters wanting a other union to fail. In my books we all rejoice if a Bok score a try, does not matter where he plays his rugby. The same works with the S14 for me unless they play against my team, which I will support even if I know we do not stand a change.

    I just really think sometimes people misunderstood each other.

  2. Morne you have a good point. However the doomsayers are also correct.

    Just look at Griekwas over the past 5 years. Kwas’ doing it for themselves.

    Bulls had problems but solved it by themselves, no hand-outs.

    Why can Cheeky not insteas focus on a 5 year plan to make EP a competative CC side and then bomb for Super franchise inclusion? He rightly says many black players leave becasue there is no franchise but surely a strong CC union is the first step in keeping your players?

    All things considered however I would like to see the region get a franchisem and for this region to focus on rugby and not politics, which is I believe what the Bulls have done.

  3. Cheeky will whinge and say they are entitled… and then i will stop reading or listening…

    As the Bulls did


  4. Reply to newbokshields @ 10:38 am: Reply to DavidS @ 11:03 am:

    No-one is talking freebies, well I am certainly not.

    What is apparent to me is that some believe in entitlement for whatever reason.

    The Bulls had that in those very difficult years (they continued to be included in the Super Comp) and the Lions more recently. But the same entitlement is not afforded to all.

    That said, yes, do it for yourselves, but take nothing for granted, as mentioned before – the wheel turns.

    I just believe the wheel does not need to turn, we can do better and not have people raising entitlement issues to begin with.

    Rugby is losing more and more every year, and I think we won’t actually notice this before it is too late.

  5. To illustrate how bad the Bulls were those days: Not even the minnow Lions have gone in a S14 losing 13 on the trot.

  6. And then they started to think they were entitled to win the CC. Until the Cheetahs had other ideas and Tswane closed early.

  7. So I guess the question is: If the Bulls thought they were entitled to the CC, why can;t the Kings believe they are just entitled to a chance?

  8. Good article Morné…

    The basic problem is ‘protectionism’ to be kind… or greed… to be blunt…
    fed by emotion and racism…

    and it is both short-sighted and misplaced… IMO…

    people are against anything that MAY affect or reduce the size of their own pie… and this is not just a South African problem… the IRB is just the same… they talk about expanding the game but the World Cups go to the old boys club… So they can rake in the money… so on an idealistic level they say the right things… but when it comes down to it… it’s about greed and feeding the old boys club…

    If the IRB really want to make rugby a global sport the next world cup should be hosted in the USA… each state can ‘adopt a team’ and the networks can throw their considerable weight behind it… because IF America truly got behind rugby… it would only be a matter of time before they were one of the top teams in the world… and rugby would grow in leaps and bounds… they just have the talent and logistics and systems and support… that no other country enjoys… this would ensure a huge audience for the game and, consequently huge sponsorship…. And don’t let anyone say American’s don’t like rugby… there is a mystique and awe for rugby that Americans are fascinated by… in my experience having lived there for a while…

    but the IRB… for all their PR… can’t see the big picture and will continue to ‘award’ or ‘reward’ the old boys with world cup comps…

    in SA administrators and supporters are exactly the same… instead of seeing the bigger picture and displaying emotional intelligence and accepting delayed gratification… they’re all to focused on what they COULD lose instead of all pitching in to create bigger pie for all to actually have more at the end of the day… they want instant gratification and damn everybody else…

    they don’t see that by growing the market and the competition is actually a good thing as it is in all business spheres… because, as you keep saying Morné, rugby is a professional sport but it is still run by amateurs…

    I also believe the biggest obstruction to the Kings… is that everyone who criticises it is thinking very emotionally about the issue… of course everyone will deny that and come up with ‘unemotional’ reasons for not supporting the Kings… but the fact is… we’re rugby mad in this country… the emotional kick that fans get from their team winning just cannot be underestimated… I suppose it’s almost like a drug… ANY threat to that, real or imagined, will not be tolerated…

    sadly, I believe that racism is also part of the problem… many rugby fans are conservative and can’t or won’t accept the new South Africa… and to create a team for the purposes of promoting rugby among the black population… is just something they will never accept or get behind…

    everyone will come up with a million reasons why it won’t work… but behind it all is emotion and racism…

    I’ve got a fire extinguisher handy…

  9. UFO,

    No fires that will be started. Rather be prepared to defend it. Believe it can become a long debate. I speak from experience.

  10. Some good advice for missus ERT

    A woman goes to the doctor, beaten black and blue. . . . .

    Doctor: “What happened?”

    Woman:” Doctor, I don’t know what to do. Every time my husband comes home drunk he beats me to a pulp….”

    Doctor:”I have a real good medicine against that: When your husband comes home drunk, just take a glass of chamomile tea and start gargling with it. Just gargle and gargle”.

    2 weeks later she comes back to the doctor and looks reborn and fresh again.

    Woman:” Doc, that was a brilliant idea! Every time my husband came home drunk I gargled repeatedly with chamomile tea and he never touched me.

    Doctor:” you see how keeping your mouth shut helps!!!”

  11. Reply to UFO @ 12:27 pm:

    and to create a team for the purposes of promoting rugby among the black population
    A thought that ocurred to me last
    night, on the lines of reaching
    out to black players, racism in
    rugby etc. – you know all the
    politicised arguments and counter
    arguments, e.g. start at school
    level (at a time when the schooling
    system is going for a ball of shit?).

    Anyway, my thought:

    RAU and UPE and Tuks had all the
    structures in place when they
    were overwhelmingly white and
    were strong clubs.

    These demographics have changed.
    Blacks are now in the majority.

    I presume the structures and
    traditions are still there.
    Yet RAU and UPE are not remotely
    the forces they were. Not sure
    about Tuks.

    Which made me wonder:
    Why did the black students not
    join the game? Or must we all
    just accept that it is not their
    first sport of choice?

    This is not intended as a loaded
    statement, so you can all take
    a deep breath and cool down and
    respond if you wish.

  12. Reply to Boertjie @ 1:00 pm:

    I for one understand what you are saying – it is hard to convince people to play rugby if they are more into other sports.

    It is a numbers game:
    Austria for example have no lack of people who would make great rugby players – have you seen the size of these downhill skiers and bobsleigh teams!? But getting them to play rugby is a hell of a problem and in the end a numbers game.
    Probably the same in RAU etc. previously 80% of the men at the UNI would have played rugby at school and would think about it at uni but now maybe 30% of the men are from a rugby background and thus the interest is lacking – am I way off or is this the problem today?

  13. Reply to Boertjie @ 1:00 pm:

    Because there are probably less of them that really want to play the game than what people think. The emphasis on WANT.

    Now who is going to pull the trigger? :soek:

  14. Reply to Boertjie @ 1:00 pm:

    I wrote some time back that the biggest mistake the EC region made was to label themselves as the transformation vehicle or hub of SA rugby.

    They should have gone about their business in the simplest of fashions, for example, an area that has a horde or registered RUGBY PLAYERS (of which many just happens to be black) with good feeder systems and the capacity to manage a super rugby franchise.

    They decided not to, and is still paying the price.

    No perceptions are as bad as the ones you create yourself.

  15. i enjoy snoek quite a bit. I was at teazers the other day. There is a girl with a seashell tatooed to her inner thigh. They say if you put your ear real close to the shell, you can smell the ocean.

  16. Reply to Morné @ 1:10 pm:

    I wrote some time back that the biggest mistake the EC region made was to label themselves as the transformation vehicle or hub of SA rugby.
    That’s why I don’t trust Cheeky.
    He should read the Freedom Charter,
    and become the first person to
    carry out those ideals of non-
    racialism etc.

    Reply to JT @ 1:11 pm:
    but snoek is terrible. yoh.
    Sjarrap jy in die kombuis.
    Jy weet nie eers wat
    skilpadjies en Karoo
    oesters is nie.
    Al gehoor van bokkoms?

  17. Reply to Boertjie @ 1:00 pm:

    I’m chilled Boertjie… I enjoy engaging with people… all people… especially people who have differing views to mine because it affords me the opportunity to learn and grow… heck… talking to people who always agree with us gets damn boring…

    I can’t answer about, or for, RAU etc… but neither should the Eastern Cape have to answer for RAU…

    what I can say is that there is huge rugby support in the Eastern Cape… in the townships their kids grow up playing rugby and cricket…

    I heard an interview by Pomi Mgungwa (cricket commentator – forgive spelling) with Cricket South Africa’s President, Dr Mtutuzeli Nyoka, talking about growing up in the townships and how the kids grew up idolising the white rugby and cricket players while also supporting and idolising their own rugby and cricket players… Dr Nyoka is one of the country’s top eye-surgeons… gets up a 4 in the morning to be operating by 7 then does cricket and other work from 10am to 10pm… not a guy afraid of hard work… the passion he explains they feel for rugby and cricket in the Eastern Cape is incredible…

    I also spent a day in Motherwell with Mfuneko Ngam… the cricketer… had dinner in his house with his family… awesome people… we walked around Motherwell and the passion and excitement generated by Mfuneko was incredible… kids wanted him to bowl to them… be like him… there were also kids kicking around old patched up rugby balls and playing in the dusty streets… I kicked a couple of balls but wasn’t dressed for a game… although they all wanted me to play with them… (and I’m a nobody…)

    These are the people who will benefit from the Kings… hopefully some local players make it into the Kings team (if there aren’t already) and rugby could be the catalyst for huge growth in the area in terms of role models and emotional fulfilment… sceptics may say it won’t happen… I strongly believe it will… and those role models that will in turn generate more excitement and more players etc…

    Whether we like it or not… every white person in South Africa has benefitted from apartheid to a greater or lesser extent… that is the simple truth…

    So yes… I believe we do owe it to the Eastern Cape to chip in and offer them a foot-up and get them on the road where that passion for rugby (and cricket) can be demonstrated on the highest stage…

    And when was it ever wrong to offer anyone a helping hand…? But we need to all get behind them and support the concept – if not the team – and put the structures, incentives and logistics in place to enable the Kings to be established…

    I think it would be awesome because it would further enhance our player pool and would be great for Bok and South African rugby…

    I for one would be very proud to see the Kings playing S15 rugby and contributing players to the Bok team…

  18. Reply to UFO @ 1:50 pm:

    I think with the right people in charge, everyone will support the Kings.

    Mind you, they have an ex-Blue Bull guy there now, together with who is it again? Solly who will take up the reigns as coach?

    Add one or two business savvy gentleman to the mix, some ex-rugby players to drive the cause and harbour support, and you might just surprise a hell of a lot of people with how people will get in behind this concept.

    I for one am quite bored with 3 of our teams consistently ending up at the bottom, if anything, our rugby needs a breath of fresh air.

  19. Reply to UFO @ 1:50 pm:

    I for one would be very proud to see the Kings playing S15 rugby and contributing players to the Bok team…
    So would I, even if they
    are not black.
    I just don’t think they
    are going about it in
    the right way.
    Too many examples of
    BEE bombing out.

  20. Reply to Morné @ 1:34 pm:

    Have you had ‘real’ Buffalo mozzarella… and ‘real’ pizza doesn’t have much on… just a decent sauce, and sparce ingredients on the the thinnest blistered crust… wood-fired the best…

  21. Reply to Morné @ 1:56 pm:

    I agree Morné…

    Of course I’m not saying it will be easy or perfect or a stroll in the park… but if the political will was there to make it happen… we can ALL make it happen… heck… South Africa is an amazing country with tons of amazing, intelligent, inventive, industrious people of all colours…

    thing we can all kick something when it is down… but it takes the bigger man to stop and offer a hand… the traditionally ‘white’ unions have centuries of collective experience and if they all chipped in a little… collectively… it would make a huge difference in getting the Kings off the ground and making sure they are a success…

    I don’t see it as an us and them scenario… I see it as us doing it together for ourselves…

    Solly did a fantastic job with the Kings against the Lion’s… would be interesting to see what he could do with them in the long term…

    Reply to Boertjie @ 1:56 pm:

    I agree with you… black or white… and on merit…

    I also agree with that it hasn’t been handled at all well… but we shouldn’t throw out the baby with the bath water…

    Oom Otley vertel my dié staaltjie oor hulle wildtuintoer:

    As jou water na drol stink en jy sien nie een dryf nie, moet jy selfinspeksie doen en seker maak jy is nie dalk self die drol wat almal se water gatterig laat smaak nie.

    Sommer met die intrapslag hou ek niks van die Ingelsman wat my kleindogter hier by ons kom aansleep nie. Vir weke al sien ons uit na haar kuiertjie uit London en aan die begin kon ons nie fout sien, dat sy nou haar Ingelse boyfriendjie wou saamnooi op ‘n onvergeetlike toer saam met Oupa en Ouma deur die Kruger Wildtuin nie. Uiterlik nie ‘n onaangename seun nie, maar toe die bleeksiel sy bek oopmaak en my met “Hello Gramps” groet, is my moer klaar suur. Sulke voorbarige vermetelheid. Met die pap handjie waarmee hy bladskud, skud ek hom amper uit sy oorbel en hy het reeds een verloor.

    Maar opgedress vir die okkasie hoor. Leerstewels wat amper tot by sy knieë kom, sy khakibroek al die pad ingedruk. Met sy dik belt se gespe sal mens ‘n olifant met twee houe kan doodslaan. Wat die man als gelees het oor Suid-Afrika weet ek nie, maar aan die belt is ‘n waterbottel, ‘n mes wat amper sy stewels raak, ‘n moonbag met ‘n rooi kruis op en een van daai kanariegeel selfone met die baie knoppies. Die man dra ‘n swart t-shirt wat sê rook is verbode en iets van die aardbol wat warm word. Maar ek weet, die Wildtuin is nie speletjies oor Desember nie. Warm gaan die man beslis warm kry en rook gaan ek beslis rook, al het Kleinpop my agteraf gewaarsku dat die man so bietjie opgewonde oor tabakgebruik kan raak.

    Die man is goed in tale ook. Al drie Afrikaanse woorde by Kleinpop geleer. ‘Dankie, kak en lekka.’ Alles is kak of lekka. Kleinpop is lekka. Ons paaie is kak. Die son is kak. Ouma se koeksisters is lekka. Vreeslik puntenerig oor kos ook, die mannetjie. Eet nie vleis nie, eet nie dit nie, eet nie dat nie, daai moet eers gekook word voor hy sal drink ens, ens.

    Ek kon dit nog vat toe die man iets van “kak SUV” sê toe hy in die kombi klim, maar toe die man “kak music” op my Klipwerf mompel, steek ek summier my pyp op. Sommer so in die ry, soos ek altyd maak. Kleinpop probeer nog verbouereerd keer, maar Oupa leer die man nog bietjie Afrikaans:

    “Fok jou, in my van rook ek, broer.”

    Die man leer vinnig en maak sy eie Afrikaanse kombinasies:

    “Fok, this rook is lekka kak, dankie.”

    Maar met ‘n man wat nie vleis eet nie, gaan dit maar lekka kak in die wildtuin. Teen dag drie is die man se slaaiblare wat hy in Phalaborwa se Spar gekoop het al heel vrot. Sy dieet bestaan uit Ouma se padkoskoekisters, Nik-Naks en braaivleispap sonder sous. Teen aand vier is hy honger genoeg om sy vegetariese geloof te verloën. Natuurlik nie openlik nie. Vang ek vir Kleinpop uit, toe sy ongemerk ‘n tjop of drie na die man se tentjie toe smokkel.

    Dag vyf ruik ons al vroegoggend vegetariese maagreaksies op vleis. Net mooi in die middel van nêrens en op die dag se hitte kom klop die man op my skouer hier voor in die kombi, so in die ry.

    “I MUST go!” beduie die man na sy poephol asof ek nie lankal kon ruik wat hy wil doen nie.

    Ek stop maar die kombi naby ‘n laagte boompies. Dit is in elkgeval so warm, geen dier sal dit in die omgewing waag nie.

    “There,” beduie ek hom na die boompies.

    “No ways!” protesteer die mannetjie toe.

    Ek beduie vir die mannetjie in my beste Engels dat daar “no ways” is dat hy verder my kombi se binnelug met sy buikwinde gaan ontsier. As hy nie nou sy ding gaan doen nie, gaan hy verder stap.

    “Gee vir die man kakpapier,” beveel ek vir Kleinpop.

    Die man weet nou al genoeg van Afrikaans om te smeek “No, I want nice paper please!”

    Soos iemand wat oor duwweltjies stap, benader die Ingelsman sy natuurtoilet. Na ‘n rukkie verdwyn hy agter die boompies. Ons kyk maar almal versigtig in die omgewing om die man darem betyds te waarsku, sou daar dalk ongediertes nader sluip.

    Nou een ding van die Wildtuin. As een kar stop, stop almal agter hom om te kyk watse diere kyk die voorste kar. Veral so op die middaghitte as daar min is om te sien. Die Ingelsman het skaars gehurk, voor die Land Rover agter ons stop. Die gesinnetjie bespied die rigting wat ons kyk. Hulle wil ook sien wat ons sien. Verkykers word uitgehaal. Nog voertuie stop. Een ou klim uit met ‘n groot kamera op ‘n driepoot. Nog karre stop. Na vyf minute lyk dit soos die Dakar Rally wat wil afskop. Groepies brawes staan teen die reëls orals buite hul karre en kyk met lang lense. Party klim bo-op hul voertuie se dakke vir ‘n beter uitsig. Wild was besonders skaars hierdie jaar.

    Nou of daar werklik een was, weet ek nie, miskien was dit ‘n oorywerige verbeelding in ‘n desperate soeke na diere. Maar toe die ou so ses karre van ons af skree “Leeu, ek sien hom!” weet ek die Ingelsman verstaan meer Afrikaans as wat ons gedink het. Met al die mense wat so staan en kyk na die veld agter hom, kry die kreet nog eerbaarheid ook.

    Soos ‘n lus foksterriër wat hitte geruik het, peul die man uit sy bostoilet uit en hardloop vir die kombi. Die broek om die enkels laat die man so paar keer pens en pootjies neerslaan, maar sy herstel is elke keer merkwaardig. Sy roete na die eindpaal is een stofbol soos die man beweeg. By die kombi aangekom is die man se broek darem min of meer heuphoogte, maar in die veld lê ‘n lang mes en ‘n kanariegeel selfoon. Die Ingelsman soek dit klaarblyklik nie terug nie. Die konvooi karre agter ons, ry stadig verby, terwyl die Ingelsman sy broek en asem op die regte plekke kry. Te oordeel aan die hoeters en gesigte het die mense waarde vir geld in die wildtuin gekry.

    Na die vakansie is Kleinpop heel uit haar Ingelsman uit. Dié het sommer vroeg ‘n vlug London toe gevat. Sy wil hom nie weer sien nie. Miskien was dit die nagedagte aan die ongebruikte toiletpapier. Miskien was dit die klein, bleek, swaaiende voorgedagte.

  23. Reply to Boertjie @ 1:00 pm:

    Boertjie when I was at Tuks we had the following rugby fields.

    1 – Stadium – the one that now have the upgrade lights for Varsity Cup


    A – E fields, next to each other, parrallel to the Cricket Oval, above mentioned Stadium and the Athletics Field next to it.

    Then parrallel and below these rugby fields were the Tennis courts – 10 or so and next to Tennis courts were the ONE soccer field

    Then we got the F and G, the H and I, the J and K, and L and M rugby fields below the above – that also dubbled-up as cricket ovals in summer

    fooking baie as you can see.

    Today (as far as I have seen) only the Stadium which doubles as soccer field and the A – E are rugby fields with two of them also doubles as soccer fields.

    The rest were changed to soccer and hockey fields.

    Rugby is a dying game – we just do not want to accept that fact !!!

  24. Reply to The Brand @ 2:23 pm:

    Just proves what I’ve said,
    I suppose. Other preferences,
    no problem.
    Just as there are very few
    black swimmers, tennis players,
    gholfers around.
    And even fewer marathon runners
    that are white.

    Natural selection, cultural
    preference – call it what you

  25. Reply to UFO @ 12:27 pm:

    I disagree

    Oh I am aware that there are indeed fans out there who would express greed or provincialism as a reason for not wanting the Kings / Spears concept to work because it could corrode the abilities of their own sides, but look at it objectively and the contentions are nonsensical.

    Perhaps I could say that given some of the dumb things uttered after Oregan Hoskins assumed power and killed the Spears idea off that WITHIN THE UNION ADMINISTRATORS THEMSELVES theer is a certain amount of terror about cash getting lost, and maybe lower tier “fans”… but not amongst rugby supporters as a whole.

    First these regions have always been bulwark regions when it comes to rugby players and their growth.

    I am not aware of the cultures of other rugby playing regions outside Gauteng and to be honest I have a very low tolerance for the general rugby values of the fans of Natal and WP, but as a youngster my grandfather taught me that one may be a fan of the team in whose region you live but one should never devalue the support for good players.

    Now let us be honest

    Even though they played for EP in their years when they were a damned good side who did not enjoy the sight of a bullocking Frans Erasmus, or Adri Geldenhuys planting Pote Fourie or Danie Gerber slipping weakened tackles or Hennie Le Roux sending his line away or Heinrich Fuls’ testing runs from the back?

    All of us did…. and hell I for one would LOVE to see that back, whether in the guise of EP, the “Elephants” or even the so-called Kings*…

    And the truth is that (when one looks at the when the Spears concept came round) that there ARE sponsors outside the current set of sponsors in rugby who are more than willing to partake in the cash cow… even regional sponsors!

    Now when did the decline of the Eastern Cape region begin…

    If I say it out loud there will be yet another storm of protest, so let me stand by saying that once incompetent amateurs took over the reigns of professional organizations the slide began… with the best players from the EC rather plying their trade elsewhere

    Names like Kabamba Floors Bevin Fortuin, De Wet Barry the Ndungane brothers hell even everyone’s favorite schnarffer of the moment P3 and his brother Kallie

    Primarily the Bulls, Sharks and Cheetahs benefitted

    Reply to The Brand @ 2:23 pm:

    Ja and think of it

    How many of the famous Afrikaans schools of Joburg are still producing players?

    In fact how many of them are left?

    Randburg Hoer?
    Die Burger

    The latter two are no longer white schools

    Helpmekaar has become an “academic private school”

    Randburg is “dual medium” and only still plays rugby in B Leagues

    The emigration of the primarily white rugby bazse supporters / players from South Africa is snuffing it out in the metro areas… even in the rural areas. Friend of mine played for Meyerton, but because GLRU imposes “quotas” based on race that they have no idea how to fill, they have closed the club.

    So ja… rugby is dying and I’ve said it before

    2007 was the zenith of our rugby…

    * What a kak name in any case

  26. Reply to Boertjie @ 3:28 pm: Have you seen whose won the Comrades the past few years?

    Male and female…

    Unless there’s been a sudden discovery of a white tribe of Africans in Russia I’d say they’re pretty European looking to me.

  27. Reply to DavidS @ 3:35 pm:

    Jip, the Russians usually
    win it.
    Forgot about the Comrades –
    in any case it has no
    bearing in athletics, it’s
    just an “event”.

    But check the World Ranking
    lists, Olympics, World
    Champs etc. etc.

    Ditto with sprints.

    In the old days distances was
    mostly the Fins’ territory,
    like javelin throwing used
    to be.

  28. Ja Boer and also the culture of spending your money to help the cause of sport is yet to take root among the ANC fatcats. How many filthy rich heads come from the region and were involved with rugby in their youth?

    Why then do no-one spend money to build gyms and afford coaches and pay for lights etc?

    And why did Griekwas manage to lure Wildeklawer yet the EP could not get VW or Mercedes or pretty much any company to get behind their game?

  29. Reply to newbokshields @ 4:08 pm:

    I think it has a lot
    to do with UBUNTU being
    the myth it is.
    By the last count there
    were many more black
    millionaires than whites.

    But they won’t reach for
    their pockets.

  30. And aside from Oasis how many BEE’s like Mvela are splashing their names on rugby jerseys

    A main issue is the fact that people like Supersport and Vodacom and ABSA other SA Rugby sponsors have made “exclusivity” deals with SA Rugby

    As an example in the old days of the Spears they guys from Cell C were very keen on splashing a C on the jerseys of the Spears but Vodacom has an exclusivity agreement so no other telecom may sponsor in SA Super 14…

    Same goes for banks in the Currie Cup

    Reply to Boertjie @ 4:01 pm:

    Nah I disagree

    Border and EP decline happened because those quotas were filled…

  31. Reply to DavidS @ 4:14 pm:

    Border and EP decline happened because those quotas were filled…
    Actually we agree.
    The quotas were also filled
    in (mis)management structures.

    As for sponsors:
    I’m not referring to franhcise
    sponsorship – more on the lines
    of clubs and schools rugby
    being sponsored. Facilities

    The major schools now also
    carry logos on their jerseys.

  32. Reply to Boertjie @ 4:42 pm:

    You know who paid for the
    most synthetic athletics
    tracks in the seventies?

    Not the government.

    Louis Luyt.

    And Rupert paid for the
    Sports Foundation.

    Anyway, Cell C can’t even run
    a cellphone company.

  33. Reply to DavidS @ 3:32 pm:

    DavidS… no surprise there…

    Objectivity and subjectivity are entirely dependant on the point-of-view of the protagonists…

    It’s always easy to cherry-pick “examples” that “support” an argument… It’s also easy to always point out the obviously negative… It’s easy to think of a million reason why something won’t work and feel justified in doing nothing about it… It’s a lot more honest to put every effort into making something work and only when and if it doesn’t work… saying it doesn’t work… What’s that old saying… “I’d rather try and fail than fail to try…”

    Dumb things have been uttered by every chief of South African rugby… including Louis Luyt and the great Danie Craven. So I don’t know why anything said by Hoskins should be held against the Kings/EP…? He’s the SARU chief so why aren’t his dumb sayings held against the Bulls, Lions, Sharks, Cheetahs and Province…?

    So the administration of EP is/was a mess…? For the last few years the administration of the Lion’s has been a disaster… but no one is writing them off… a season or two ago the Lions/Cats had a record of something like five wins out of 60 or so Super rugby games…? But no-one holds that against them and says let’s get rid of the Lion’s. In fact, when people do suggest that the Lion’s could be axed due to non-achievement and merged with the Bulls or Cheetahs… virtually everyone jumps to their defense…

    Of course we all enjoyed those EP players you mention… but all those players you mention (and many more) all left EP too… and long before the new dispensation… before 1994… so the later players you mention as having left EP to illustrate something bad happening there makes no sense… the decline you speak happened way before 1994… So I can’t see what that point has to do with NOT supporting the Kings concept.

    It’s only my opinion… but I don’t think you’ve offered a single valid reason not to support the Kings. Quite the opposite… I believe you’ve offered the single best reason why we should support the Kings… The talent pool in the region… which of course includes white players but extends to a huge pool of black players too…

    Your point about how many Afrikaans schools are still producing players could have more to do with attitudes that throw up their hands and refuse to participate and isolate themselves from the system instead of working within the system as part of a greater whole…

    Talent will always win throw in the end… For example: Kevin Pietersen chose to leave SA “because the quota system counted against him making the Protea team”. Many here will nod their heads in support of his decision. But guys like AB de Villiers, Dale Steyn, the Morkel Brus, Johan van der Watt and many others have made it to the top because they have the talent and the patience to apply themselves. There is no black or coloured cricketer who has been selected for SA who has not had the talent to be there.

    Of course everyone will point out the example of Jacques Rudolph as someone who was kept out of the team on racial grounds… and I would agree with everyone… it was a shocking episode and extremely unfair of Rudolph (and Robin Pietersen)… but it is one example among many others where race has made no difference…

    All it does do is make the talent pool bigger and make it harder to get to the top. So that only the very best get into the national teams… It is just coincidence or has South Africa become the top ranked cricket team only while being fully integrated…?

    Yes, rugby made it to the top in 95 only using players from one pool of talent… (except Chester of course) but how much better would we be if we added the cream of the black and coloured players to the cream of the white players…? You then get things like 2007… and we can keep doing that… IMO…

    Reply to DavidS @ 3:32 pm:

    Again… you’re cherry-picking… If you’re honest, you’ll acknowledge that Comrades is just one race… and a race in which most of the world’s top long-distance runners do NOT participate… So it’s hardly a profound example. Look at the great majority of marathon runners in the world and the majority are black… but they are not great runners because they are black… they are great runners because the live at altitude and have to walk and run to get anywhere… ie they train at altitude their whole lives which gives them the advantage… much like the Bulls and Lions have the advantage when rugby players of any colour come and play there…

    Reply to DavidS @ 4:14 pm:

    I bet you every one of the rugby sponsors would insist to you they are BBEEE companies… But what does that have to do with anything…? Why must only a “BEE” company sponsor the Kings… What about Mercedes or VW… both massive companies in PE as just two examples…???

  34. Reply to UFO @ 9:57 am:

    On other sites perhaps (not that its hard), but on this site I rank about 15th!

    But you put your arguments across quite well and it is very nicely constructed – plus you use big words which confuses Davids…

    Ever thought about writing?

  35. Reply to Morné @ 10:05 am:

    don’t know how these ‘rankings’ work… but based on your knowledge of the game and your well-considered, balanced and well-expressed views… I consider it high praise coming from you… whatever rankings their may be…

    I’m sure some others here will not agree with or like me or my views… and that’s okay too… keeps life interesting and our feet on the ground…

    that is pretty much my day job…

  36. Reply to UFO @ 10:13 am:

    Plenty of knowledgable people that hang around here, get most of my stuff from them.

    And people hate okes that just agree with each other! here we challenge all views and keep it respectable, although Davids does go East Rand from time-to-time!

    I think you will fit in perfectly here, I like the way you tackle issues.

  37. The only reasonable solution is to let the Sharks and Cheetahs combine under the Cheetahs brand. The Sharks are mostly old Cheetahs in any case. Then there is a spot for the Kings.

    If not that plan B will be to combine the Bulls and Lions, but that will saddle the Bulls with one hell of a handicap.

  38. UFO

    SARU have a regional structure for S14 representation.

    They must either let the CC teams play promo style for the “right/ oPPortunity/priviledge” to play Super rugby or abolish the idea of regional reprsentation.

    Because if its regional the BuLLs & The Lions should be one team- Gauteng Giants!

    Then the EC region can have their slot and RUGBY is served- as we weLL heard rugby is dying in Gauteng at fEEder level.

    Why must the two regions where itis huge at schOOl level not be aFForded Super status?

    I doubt that a sustainable model for the Lions Union wiLL be found- sad but reality.

  39. Reply to Deon @ 11:18 am:

    Its a personal opinion

    No I dont want to be aSSociated with the deBBen lot

    baRRing Ruan( which left for other reasons that the normal Bloem2 deBBen muNNy trail) who would we want back?

    Frans Steyn isnt a $hark anymore…

    Bismarck is OK but AdriAAn StrauSS is as gOOde

    JaNNie weLL…. has he reaLLy done weLL in DeBBen?

    Now I know Deysel is from Krowntown – but not even me wiLL claim him as somebody to get “back”


    not interested.

    Players I would like to get “back”

    Micheal ClAAsens


    CJ for depth


    Philip Burger- imaging him oFFloading after the break to Mapoe

    Yip Frans Steyn wiLL be schwEEt.

  40. ChEEtahs stiLL lack a seriously gOOde Super rugby capable 10 though and the fact that we do not have one caNNot be blamed on the $harks or uDDa chequebOOks

    When lAAities leave like Morne Steyn did -its fuLLy understOOd why- and aPPreciated when he “makes” it elsewhere.

  41. Morne

    Is there a trend – to be backed up by examples of claSS flyhalves that leaves the environment where they exceLLed at first and the equaLLed or even better their own level of play in the new team?

    Okes I can think of Honiball, Hernandez …. ….

  42. Reply to Morné @ 10:24 am:

    I’m sure there are Morné… just have to get to know them and/or what other nics they’re posting under… also the fact that you are/were involved in coaching is something I really do respect…

    Must say that their seems to be a higher level of debate here and it’s kept reasonably ‘intellectual’ in that it doesn’t seem to degenerate in one-line back-and-forth personal insults… which is great…

    Will try to achieve and maintain the standards set here…!!

    Reply to WiLLem @ 10:51 am:

    You mean you haven’t met them yet!!

    Reply to Deon @ 10:54 am: &
    Reply to WiLLem @ 10:58 am:

    It really is a tough one… IF the only way forward is combining two teams to make way for the Kings… Looking at it unemotionally… I believe the most sensible solution would be to combine the Bulls and Lions… in terms of geography and fan-base… part of the Cats problem was that true supporters couldn’t get to half the matches… that would be less of a problem with the Bulls/Lions and would also ensure the Coke Tin is always full… therefore more cash in…

    Personally… I feel the best solution would be to get behind establishing a Kings franchise and putting a lot of effort, time and money into ensuring the existing problems are ironed out and that they let them contract players and GIVE them a slot in the first S15 by dropping the lowest SA team in this S14… and from then on having a play-off system with the sixth team every year… with the winner going S15 the loser going home… till the end of year play-offs again…
    And remembering that WP is still the only SA team to be demoted… so I know how much it hurts as a supporter… so am not saying this flippantly as any year the Stormers could just as easily be demoted again…

    Basically let there be competition for places… so administrators would HAVE to be effective if they want to reap the rewards of playing in the big leagues… if they stuff around they’ll languish in the minors most of the time…

    Also believe that Solly did so well with the Kings against the Lions in just four days that after a season together the Kings would be well able to hold their own and possibly win a play-off and stay in the S15…

  43. Reply to WiLLem @ 11:44 am:

    I cannot think of many.

    Stransky’s game dropped when he moved to WP, Koen’s dropped when he moved North, same with Lance Sherryl in the earlier days.

    JL Potgieter I believed improved but it seems it is very few and far between.

    Will keep a keen eye on Petoors at the Force this year.

  44. “Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are even incapable of forming such opinions.” Albert Einstein

  45. How about a PR system called: Show me the money.

    The 5 teams with the highest $$ commitment from fans and sponsors get to play.

    Money has no emotions.
    Money has no prejudices.

    It is a professional sport after all.

  46. ALL for that Fynes – foLLowing the muNNY…

    The muNNy driving SA rugby is DSTV decoder subscriptions. You are welcome to team up wiFF Davids to dispute this.

    So, if Multichoice be so kind to ask the gOOde people forking out the muNNy to tag their choice – we have a simple spreadshEET wiFF da muNNy stats and voila

    five Super rugby contestants decided!

    simple – isnt it – to “always” foLLow the muNNy!

  47. Reply to WiLLem @ 4:57 pm:
    That is probably already happening and the teams are currently exactly where the money wants them to be.

    The noises SARU makes about the Kings are mainly to placate the politicians and play for time.

  48. Reply to fyndraai @ 3:34 pm:

    I have agreed with just about everything you have said on this blog since you joined us.

    But never have I agreed with you as much as per your #70 post.

    Do you realise how much shit we will rid ourselves off in the game of rugby if this happens?

  49. Lots of k@k talked here

    Particulalry the part where I am accused of “cherry picking” when I have simply recited facts… and in particular without cherry picking as what I cherry picked was actually in all respects true of the unions that have “fallen” into the hands of the previously disadvantaged have duely folded.

    The reference to the Lions is a joke and is a genuine case of “cherry picking”… as in

    The Lions have played in C semi finals and two finals in 2003 and 2007 in case anyone forgot…. As the cats franchise they were poor simply because the Free State players decided to politicize the franchise and after Griz Wylie left… intentionally tried to actively sabotage the franchise.

    In 2007 when it became the Lions under Loffie Eloff he was given three seasons to change… he didn’t he got fired… BUT let’s not leave it there… the Lions HAVE actively done things to improve their lot… hired consultants, contracted different players, fired their whole executive, gotten old players involved, entered into BEE deals to get cash in…

    The EP and Border have stumbled from crisis to crisis since 1996 when they became nominally professional… remember that the Lions came off a high point of 2001 when a Capetonian took ver the union as CEO and Louis Luyt was ousted by Silas the Nunu…

    The fall has lasted all of nine years but it has been gradual and it has not been as complete as the Border and EP… recollecting that in the 1980’s a trip to PE was a daunting trip… in 1988 the all conquering Bulls side lost only one match and that was against EP in Port Elizabeth… that will never happen again… there was no rebuilding… with old players rallying.. no sales to get cash and draw the crowds in… no sponsorships… nothing… so no… not cherry picking… just pojnting out the dead obvious…

    I made my points….

    I see that half my post was ignored….

    Eastern Cape government is the most incompetent and corrupt one in the country… want to hazard guesses why?**

    Or am I cherry picking again?

    I see in my absence the liberal airheads have happily fellated each other… well the party’s over Die Waarheid has returned despite the best attempts by electricity cable thieves* to keep him off air for the whole of today…

    * yet more cherry picking I suppose, like that Haiti was the first independent black nation in the Wesern hemisphere but is till the poorest and most backwarrds… and didn’t “become independent” as some allege but did it by massacring all the white and “colored” inhabitants of the island whether slave owners or not…

    **http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_Corruption_Perceptions_Index the ten most corrupt countries in the world
    Equatorial Guinea

    Notice the general trend of Dale Carnegie’s location, location, location? This is out of 180 nations by the way….Haiti is also an African country by the way… as in African residents.

  50. haises oom dawie everytime I come on here you batting for your wickets!

    Cheetahs sabotaged the Cats? Fuck me!

    At that stage we were already beating the Lions in every CC game yet come Super 124 time we would have 5 players in the Cats team! And then the cu*$s will even buy 3 of the 5 players for thier next season?

    Nee meneer this one is not our fault.

  51. Reply to Morné @ 7:58 pm:
    Now that I’ve received such a powerful endorsement I will be bold and make a prediction.

    By 2012 or 2013 the Kings will play Super-15.

    At some point in the near future, SA rugby will need a franchise with a black identity. The politics, economics and demographics all point to it. This team can only be based in PE.

    There will also not be a S16 and a PR game will not be acceptable because the Kings will loose it.

    The Stormers and the Sharks are always safe based on their big markets.
    The Bulls brand is safe right now based on their recent playing success.

    In my opinion the best option will be:
    Bulls, Cheetahs, Kings, Sharks Stormers. All regions are covered . All ethnicities are served in a fairly balanced (for rugby) way. Johannesburg Afrikaners will migrate north and the Bulls can migrate south to become a true Gauteng team.

    If the Cheetahs have a good season and finish above the Lions, the change may come as early as 2011. In that case the big-3 will have to agree to support the Cheetahs and the Kings financially to keep them viable.

    However I don’t think it will happen this way. The Lions will improve just enough to stay viable and by 2013 the Cheetahs with their small market and no help from the bigger unions will be gone.


    If it’s any consolation my predictions are normally wrong.

  52. Can go wiFF the heading- as weLL

    Three rotten old Grandmas were sitting on a bench outside a nursing home

    when Grandpa Howard walked by.

    And one of the Grandmas yelled out saying, ‘We bet we can tell exactly how old you are.’ Howard said, ‘There is no way you can guess it, you old fools.’

    One of the old Grandmas said, ‘Sure we can! Just drop your pants and under shorts and we can tell your exact age.’

    Embarrassed just a little, but anxious to prove they couldn’t do it, Howard dropped his drawers. The Grandmas asked him to first turn around a couple of times and to jump up and down several times. Then they all piped up and said, ‘You’re 87 years old!’

    Standing with his pants down around his ankles, Howard asked, ‘How in the world did you guess?’

    Slapping their knees and grinning from ear to ear, the three old ladies happily yelled in unison – – ‘We were at your birthday party yesterday!’

  53. Reply to Morné @ 10:13 pm: Oh really

    Show me the factual correctness…

    I am not a lawyer anymore Morne.

    Lawyers deal in wordsmithing and silver tongued devilry…

    I shoot straight… which is the exact opposite of what lawyers do.

    The fact is that you are the one incapable of expressing a vague opinion without writing an essay. I think where I stand is abundantly clear.

    Reply to newbokshields @ 10:35 pm:

    I think you mistake batting for wickets with on the attack…

    As I said the idea that I cherry picked is shown up to be a lie because every fact I have referred to is backed up… so by that definition of “racism” and “sponsorism” and “greed” everything I am going to extract will be “cherry picked” because there is nothing lse to pick seeing as I am picking from a whole cherry field….*

    You know shields perhaps if you go back to reality you will see that maybe in the last three years of the Cats franchise were the ones where the Cheetahs beat us… heck even Willem admitted that in 2004 in the semi finals they were relieved not to have pulled the Luions for the semi seeing as the Lions was the only team that beat the Cheetahs in all games that season.

    So let us clear some bullshit out the way shall we..

    The only times during the Cats franchise the Cheetahs beat the Lions regularly was in 2005, 2006 and …. oh yes that’s it….

    That is in almost ten years of existence so get yoyur facts straight…

    I suggest you ask your more illustrious buddy Cheetah supporting Willem about the attitude the Cheetahs players had towards the Cats… even their fans…

    hell in 2004 and 2005 the Cats tried to appoint Rassie as cats head coach and he refused… so Frans Ludeke ran the franchise because the Cheetahs refused to assist…. you sabotaged the post Griz Wylie Cats and don’t deny it.


    With the politicasl clout of the Brian Van Rooyen clubs in the colored communities of Joburg and the Soweto Rugby Club as well as the longer history and old boys network I trhink the Lions are probably the safer… and ja… without Vodakak help the Cheetahs will revert to being just another feeder union to the bigger unions like they’ve always been….

    *nice mixed metaphor… but it’s the truth…

  54. Seeing that follwoing the money is supposedly the answer to pro rugby… how do we get to that?
    Do we create a proffesional union to take care of the S14 and CC Franchises/Provinces and split it from SARU – SARU then handles the grass-roots incl CC B? Who takes charge of the National team? Surely not the new pro union?!

  55. Dawie the one thing you fail to see is that nothing is stopping the Kings or whoever, to actually become successful if they get their house in order.

    UFO made mention that every single union ran into shit at some stage, hell the Lions financials were a hot topic 2 years ago as was WP’s.

    The Bulls was on the brink of disaster in 2000/1 where players had to take pay-cuts of over 50% under the same CEO they have no, Van Graan, and Meyer being the head honcho coach back then.

    They turned their shit around…


    It is much easier to turn your shit around if you have the bargaining chips.

    Which chips are we referring to?

    Quite simply Super rugby.

    Sponsors, BEE’s and everyone will only dare take a look at you when you have something in turn to offer, like guarranteed participation in the premier Southern Hemisphere rugby competition.

    This is the bargaining chip the Bulls had in 2000/1 and the Cats (Cheetahs and Lions) had since 2000.

    So no matter what kak year, or years they experience, they are given a fair crack of turning that around.

    But perhaps you fail to see this, because you refuse to acknowledge the obvious.

  56. Reply to Morné @ 11:00 am:

    Going on your chirp of the EP failing when the bleks took over, it seems only whities are given a fair crack at things?

    Don’t you think?

    You seem to suggest it…

    And then perhaps the hated Luke Watson statement of rugby being run by a bunch of dutchmen seems to come from something that might just be rooted in our rugby?

  57. Reply to Morné @ 11:00 am: Yes there is

    But you are either to blind to see it or too scared to admit it…

    Go read the links I posted again…

    On the off chance that you are not self deluded…

    Let me throw you a spanner

    Northern Free State in 2007 and 2008 and 2009 was the only union to show a profit out of all of them (yes Bullsa nd Sharks included)

    It does not have a super franchise does it?

    Next illusion…

  58. Reply to DavidS @ 11:05 am:

    Oh on the contrary…

    Northern Freestate falls under the Cheetahs franchise…

    So as far as your facts goes, digest on this…

    The ONLY rugby unions NOT linked to a Super franchise is…


    SWD, EP and Border…

    Does that surprise you?

    Certainly does not surprise me.

  59. Reply to Morné @ 11:17 am: Oh heavens above…

    I swear I give up on you…

    The Cheetahs may draw players from Norhern Free state and compensate them for the use of the players…

    But actually sharing in the cash…

    Nope they don’t…

    Same as the Pumas don’t share teh cash the Bulls get

    Same as Falcons don’t share the cash the Lions get

    In any case

    EP, SWD and Border sold their rights to “be part” of a Super franchise to the Sharks many years ago…


    As we say in Afrikaans

    The tongue of the oppressor

    “Jy maak jou bedjie dan moet jy in hom slaap”

  60. Speaking of oppressors and their tongues

    Laaitie gebruik sy eerste paycheck om ‘n lekker warm cherrie uit te vat vir aand ete met obvious intensies..

    Sy bestel Franse sjampanje, dan Kaliforniese Chardonnay, dan Spaanse rooiwyn, truffles vir haar starter, kreef vir hoofgereg en ‘n vars soupcon van Strawberry souffle as nagereg saam met ‘n 20 jaar Remy Martin

    “Eet jy so by jou ma hulle se huis ook” vra die lat half verwaand… want sy paycheck is gonners

    “Nee” antwoord die girl..

    “Maar aan die ander kant my ma wil my nie na aandete spyker nie”

  61. Reply to DavidS @ 12:25 pm:

    Go read up on your facts and what actual compensation is received for unions that FORM PART OF A SUPER RUGBY FRANCHISE.

    It is not on a ‘only when players are used’ basis.

    And yes, they did give up their rights.

    But for very good reason.

    How do you propose a working relationship between unions 400+km from one another?

    Surely the Cats debacle put a rest to that?

    Just makes more of a case why Bulls and Lions should merge.

  62. Reply to Morné @ 12:31 pm:

    I had the S14 contracts from SARU and Newscorp and Sanzar at one point remember…

    Still do somewhere…

    The contributing unions get cash for their players and of course cash for tickets if a game is played at theri stadium….

    Oh and a measly contributionfor “development” from their host union…*

    So maybe you should be the one reading up…

    Gelukkig hoef ek nie vanaand vir hjjou te spyker nie…

    I think that’s why we marry them… cos it’s too expensive to maintain them when you’re NOT married to them!


    The Cats franchise was a debacle from 2003 when the Cheetahs suddenly decided they didn’t want to play anymore…

    Refusing to answer that the Bulls and Sharks as our most successful unions of the past decade have failed to make a profit in every year of their operating from 2000 to 2009?** How does this address your theory? See … yet another pancake dive on your own face… foot on mouth… maybe computer keyboard in mouth would be more apt…

    *just matter of interest the Griffons were a profitable union even before they were part of the Cheetahs… remember they were part of The Cats before that too.

    **despite being part of the Lions franchise the Falcons last year could not even pay their player salaries….

  63. ps. The Lions showed a profit in 2008 because they sold a 50% stake in Ellis Park Stadium to the Orlando Pirates… so share in the cash from the takings of the soccer games… which is a biggie

  64. Reply to DavidS @ 1:06 pm:

    And of course cash if the game is not played at their stadiums which is part of the deal.

    So you actually admit there is a financial contribution, unlike your tripe you first posted about them not getting anything other than player fees.

    So, my initial comment was correct, there is financial benefit to member unions of a franchise, and the only 3 unions not part of the franchise is as mentioned, the 3 EC unions…

    I dont eat pancakes…

    Theory of operating profit?

    Bliksem you cannot be that thick really?

    The FINANCIAL BENEFIT of Super rugby participation of unions in the competition is directly related to their OPERATING BUDGETS.

    With a larger OPERATING BUDGET they are allowed to contract more players, and higher quality players.

    This is why the Bulls can afford to contract 90 odd players on their books, and unions like the EP and most other unions can’t – they do not have the OPERATING BUDGET to do so.

    It has sweet blue fokkol to do with net profits.

    WP also ran at a loss a year or two back, similar to the Lions they also sold property off to cover their losses.

    But this again has fokkol to do with OPERATING BUDGETS, of which a large, if not the majority, is made up of funds generated from Super rugby participation and sponsorship associated with it.

  65. Reply to Ollie @ 1:11 pm: I don’t know

    If you’re a financial whizz… explain it


    Who has hosted games?

    Has Barnard hosted a S14 game?

    Has Welkom?


    The cash comes if a game happens at their stadium… read properly please.

    Reply to Morné @ 1:20 pm:

    I do… it’s them i am quoting from

    Reply to Boertjie @ 1:40 pm:

    Need ie wetter alleen weet waarvan hy praat

    Dis seker die DT’s…

    My understanding is thus

    Sure the operating budget increases but so do the input costs so unless they have cash to get input to increase that budget and they are running at a loss… eventually the operating budget must start to shrink…

    The Bulls and Lions and Sharks and WP and even the Cheetahs have proven aderpt at operating successfully as teams and have done changes to administration that has installed proper governance and brought a modicum of success to the way they operate..

    This is in contrast to the idiots in the Eastern cape who still have amateurs running their operations…

    Thye SWD “CEO” is a part timer wo actually runs an insurance brokerage

    The CEO of Border C2007 was a manager in the government’s customs department whilst Cheeky Watson is a political stoolie trading on his I are black” BEE credentials…

    Barend Van Graan is a businessman
    Brian Van Zyl too
    Prof Manie Reynecke and Kevin De Klerk too

    The Cheetahs use their small budget to gain good players by selecting them young…

    WP will always have lots of cash despite pi$$ing it away on things they don’t need…

    The Eastern Cape has no decent administrators, no decent business people to assist, and have killed their rugby unions…..

  66. Reply to DavidS @ 1:55 pm:

    Who has hosted games in the past?

    Boland, Kimberley, George…

    Point is quite simple, they get a percentage from the deal through their association to the franchises, whether it is hosting a game, or getting a financial percentage if they either give up their right to host a game (as have happened in the past), or their stadium is not up to standard to host games.

    FACT: They get financial benefit through association. Plain and simple, or do you want pictures now?

    The Bulls ran at a loss with Van Graan at the helm too, the Lions under Reynecke too, WP under Wagner etc etc – so they are obviously all inept morons.

    Just what is Reynecke and De Klerk professors of?

  67. Reply to Boertjie @ 1:58 pm: Hy kan dit nie in sy bier doop nie, en dis belangrik vir hom… niemand het hom vertel mens kan hulle oprol nie…

    Reply to Morné @ 2:02 pm:

    I’ve told you already hat they get financial benefits but they are not the alfa and omega…

    If the union gives up hosting then it gets compensated

    If it does not it hiosts a game and gets some cash if the ame is well attended..

    I never said that is not so..

    What I did say is that newscorp money goes to the actual hosting union…

    I.e. the Big Five

    And NOT to the small unions.

    And E and the EC unions sold those rights so they have nothing to whinge about…. they chose not to be part of Super rugby

    They should not be whingeing now.

    Kevin De Klerk is a millionaire businessman

    So is Reyneke

  68. Hey guys…

    It is my understanding that when the franchises were formed, the deal was the games would be shared out among the stadiums of the members unions…

    which at that stage meant the Sharks played some games at the Boet (if I’m not mistaken…)

    also for example Stormers had to play at Wellington (remember Deon Kayser nailing Robbie Fleck…!! )


    it didn’t work (obviously) so some of the franchises made deals like Stormers did with Boland that all the games are played at Newlands and Boland gets the equivalent in cash of their FULL stadium which means they usually make more this way…

    far as I know that is still the deal… but could be wrong… haven’t really kept up with it lately…

  69. Reply to DavidS @ 2:11 pm:


    Only an East Rander will see logic in grouping unions in a franchise association agreement if those unions are 400 to 500 km plus apart.

    The Super rugby competition and the principle behind franchises in SA rugby has always been to be a REGIONALLY based competition, how the hell is EP part of Natal or SWD part of WP rugby?

    Surely the education system up North is not that bad.

    Did they teach you geography?

    Explain to me how an association like that is a viable BUSINESS option?

  70. “EP, SWD and Border sold their rights to “be part” of a Super franchise to the Sharks many years ago”

    Very interesting that one. How much did they sell it for?

    Then in 2006 SWD and Border sold 50% shares to SARU in exchange for dropping the lawsuit and getting rid of McKeever. In essence they sold their Super rugby rights a 2nd time then.

    Nice scam.

    How many times can you sell the same thing before you have to relinquish all claims?

  71. Reply to UFO @ 2:17 pm:

    That’s how I understand
    it as well.
    And a portion of the TV
    millions is shared with the
    small unions – the only way
    they can stay afloat.

  72. ROB LOUW:

    News is he’s back and the
    cancer is in remission.
    Doctors removed part of his
    colon and 1/7th of his liver.
    Stored some cells to fight
    the cancer if and when it

  73. Reply to Boertjie @ 2:25 pm:

    Yeah heard about this selling off many times, not sure when it happened and what the reasons and motivation for it was…

    Oh and UFO, dont be shocked by myself and Dawie – its a daily occurance – stress reliever of sorts.

  74. Reply to Morné @ 2:38 pm:

    Hey Morné…

    I think it’s cool… very entertaining…

    but… more importantly… I learn a lot from both of you… and others guys… which is the main reason I like to read and post on rugby blogs…

    so… thanks to both of you…

    and don’t let me stop you!!

  75. Reply to Morné @ 2:16 pm: No he’s not

    Reply to Morné @ 2:21 pm:

    How the hell do you tie those two together?

    Geez Morne that is probably the most preposterous piece of deduction I have ever seen…

    That is not what I proposed at all…

    Fact is


    And how the hell does it matter what the distances are… by 1998 the EP, Border and SWD in any case never had any pleyrs to contribute to The Coastal Sharks franchise… added to which the times games happened at the Boet… there were more pigeons flying over than fans in the stadium….


    I dunno about business options

    Perhaps that the country’s two top electronics frims are run from Korea and Dubai respectively … (Samsung and LGE)… try another line Morne…

    Heavens above… do you pretend to be intelligent with that brain or do you have a special one for work because the one you are using now sure has low usage on it….

    Reply to fyndraai @ 2:21 pm:

    Oh it gets worse

    They also sold their shares in SAIL who owned large portions of Vodacom and by extension SA Rugby…

    So a third time…

    It is so bad that when they killed the Spears thing they actually had a board vote to kill it and liquidate it…

    Reply to Morné @ 2:22 pm:

    Kevin is not a prof

    Manie was a prof in Economics Department at RAU… I think it was in personnel managment (i.e. labour relations with Prof Luther Backer and Robert Taylor) it’s an emiritus professorship though, which means he earned it by practice not by studying…

  76. Reply to Morné @ 2:23 pm: As a coach that is you fricking chop!

    Manie Reyneke and Kevin De Klerk are running a business namely a rugby union… which is what they did to make money before they took up running a rugby union… so they’re doing the same thing… unlike Harry Viljoen

    In the words of one of the bad guys in a Steven Segal movie

    “My g—d… do I have to do all the thinking around here?”

    Reply to Morné @ 2:22 pm:

    Ja ja but your implication was going to be they have no knowledge of what they are doing or something like that…

    Reply to Boertjie @ 2:30 pm:

    Ah that is fantastic news!

    Reply to UFO @ 2:44 pm:

    We actually do like each other sort of…


  77. Reply to DavidS @ 2:46 pm:

    You either need to take up drinking or listen to your wife more becuase your logic baffles.

    Let me make it plain and simple for you…

    Unions across South Africa benefit from Super rugby participation, or association.

    All unions EXCEPT the 3 EC unions.

    And obviously you do not know about business options, because there is NO VIABLE BUSINESS SENSE OR OPTION to join rugby unions hundreds of kilometers apart and expect to be successful.

    Last time I looked, not one rugby union manufactured computer chips or DVD players – IT IS NOT THEIR BUSINESS.

    The reality is in THEIR BUSINESS doing what was done will split their support base, and as you know every single union and region in South Africa has a different rugby culture – which these knobs tried to marry in the hope it will work when everything pointed to the fact that it will never work.

    Which is also the reason the Bulls and Lions fans are so opposed to joining forces – it messes with their messed up culture and history yet both sides of tjops are 80km from one another…

    You, like most CEO’s in rugby in this country obviously has no clue how to run RUGBY as a business. You do not run it as an electronics company or the chop-shop in your back garden, different dynamics involved.

    I suppose it comes as no surprise then that most unions run at a lost.

    Fact remains, as a regional competition the only region that does not benefit from Super rugby either directly or indirectly is the EC.

    You see how daft this is?

    Why call it a regionally based competition in the first place then?

    No matter how big or small any union in every other region is, they benefit. In every other region the bigger franchise carries the biggest benefit, which filters down to the smaller union, which as Boertjie mentioned is the only thing keeping them afloat.

    This also benefits the bigger unions through player exchange programs with their associate unions as we have seen in the past where players are swopped between unions for the mutual benefit of the REGION.


  78. Reply to Morné @ 3:03 pm:

    “Unions across South Africa benefit from Super rugby participation, or association……All unions EXCEPT the 3 EC unions.”

    But if they sold those rights, surely they cannot complain.

    Just like a property owner cannot expect to collect rent from a property after he sells it.

  79. Reply to Morné @ 3:38 pm: Yes because they had no players of any quality left and neither did they have any fans that pitched up to watch tbe games…

    Games and players

    Only benefit

    You get cash for either


    No players and no fans


    sell to Sharks who had players galore and more fans….

    Besides by that time the decay was well and truly done…

    Cheeky was whingeing about entitlements, Aldy Meyer was getting to grips with professionalism as a customs official stamp smacker and Stag Cronje was trying to figure out if Sanlam or Old Mutual were selling the better product….

    Rome burnt…

    I see your neat sidestep of the estrangement question fyndraai poses….

  80. Reply to DavidS @ 3:49 pm:

    No I did not, but for your benefit let me answer it is 2-year old speak…

    If you get a piece of property for free, but this property adds no value to your financial portfolio (meaning the cost in having it exceeds the profit it brings) or otherwise what will you do with it?

    Sell it of course.

    And obviously you do not know how the cycle on players and games work do you?

    IN 2000/1 the Bulls was a mess, the stadiums were empty and they lost players by the dozen – ugly public spats inbetween.

    They sorted their kak out (all of the time being beneficiaries of a profitable Super rugby franchise system).

    The EC has their kak, buildings burning to the ground, nothing is improving because they have no collateral to which to upsell themselves to sponsors or supporters or players.

    None of them has a big brother Bulls, WP, Lions franchise to fall back against in which they can not only pool players, but pool other business resources.

    The benefit for a regional franchise group is obvious for everyone to see.

    Boland benefits from their relationship with WP, Griquas, even hating the Cheetahs guts, benefits from them, players swopping, distribution of financial and player risk/resources etc.

    These are all obvious benefits from a workable regional franchise scenario.

    This is not, and never was a case in the EC.

    Their ‘participation and association’ with previous Super rugby or union powerhouses was about as meaningful as tits on a fish – no wonder they sold them.

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