Home SANZAAR Sanzaar CEO: South African exodus reports ‘simply wrong’

Sanzaar CEO: South African exodus reports ‘simply wrong’


Sanzaar CEO Andy Marinos has branded reports of a South African exodus as “simply wrong” and expressed disappointment at reports of possible structures beyond 2020.

Sanzaar has been quick to shut down suggestions from the Northn Hemispehere that three more South African teams will join the Pro14 from 2020. According to reports, the Sharks, Stormers and Lions will follow the Cheetahs and Southern Kings after becoming “disillusioned” with Super Rugby.

But Sanzaar, organisers of Super Rugby and the Rugby Championship, said the report was unfounded and South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and Argentina remained committed to future participation.

Sanzaar CEO Andy Marinos rubbished the reports in a statement on Monday morning, and also expressed his frustration that longer-term options had been revealed in media reports.

“Sanzaar – through its joint venture partners – Australia, Argentina, New Zealand and South Africa – is currently engaged in a detailed strategic planning process that will deliver a road-map for the organisation, Super Rugby and The Rugby Championship from 2018-2030,” the statement read.

“As part of this process the partners have fully committed to the strategy and future participation.

“Any talk of a change to the stakeholder relationship and partners withdrawing, and so-called trans-Tasman competitions is unsubstantiated speculation and simply wrong.

“This 12-year strategy is designed to address the challenges facing our game and to clearly articulate Sanzaar’s vision and purpose in terms of a sustainable future. The desired outcome is the delivery of competitive, innovative, engaging and financially sustainable competitions to ensure the continued success of the Member Unions and the Super Rugby clubs/franchises.”

“Everything has been on the table – status quo, expansion, contraction, competition formats, etc – as part of our initial blue-sky thinking. We basically started with a blank piece of paper and now we are doing the detailed analysis on what is viable, sustainable and best for our competitions.

“There is an incredible amount of detailed work taking place in this review and we have specialist groups working across all aspects of the review. Therefore it is very disappointing that various aspects of the initial work in terms of potential tournament formats been taken out of context and aired in public.”

“Potential expansion into new markets for example should not be confused with only an increase in teams. We are already in the process of taking the established product to new markets. Matches being played in Singapore, Hong Kong, Fiji and Samoa are examples of this.

“We are especially mindful at present that we have just come out of a process that has seen a contraction of Super Rugby. The introduction of new teams or any form of expansion would need to meet a defined set of criteria that have been established,” added Marinos.

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  1. Where there is smoke the is fire not to far away. The Sharks are rumored to have been looking at it for a while now and the rest seems inclined to follow. That will leave SANZAAR with the Bulls from south africa. That means no more SA in superrugby so the Bulls will also move then.

  2. @Jacques: I’m pretty much in two minds. If it is to only join pro14, then I am against it, the quality is just not there, neither is the money. If it included a deal where the SA teams gain access to top14 and HC through some or other promotion relegation game, which currently excludes Cheetahs and Kings, then it makes more sense. Maybe even access to 6N in future.

    It has more than one benefit. We get to see all our players compete in one time zone, which makes it easier to follow overseas based players. It also would allow more games in “prime time “ which would get higher advertising value. The downside though is that there already is a lot of games being played every week in European comps, adding 6 SA sides, would increase that a lot. Let’s see what happens, it would make it really good to also then have tours against NZ and Aus again.

  3. LMAO Andy Marinos “12 year strategy”.
    Sanzar goes panic with goofy crap that pops up a month out – 12 years out we’ll all be on Bitcoins & cruising hovercraft.
    Was this a written statement ? Can’t see him saying this without snickering – unless he took beta-blockers before belching out this nonsense

  4. @Americano: How do you like the noughties corporatespeak “strategy” “bluesky thinking” “blank piece of paper”, “potential”, “sustainable future”, “road-map planning”

    He sounds like an MBA text book

    Marinos is a sort of laughing stock from his days at WP, SARU and now SANZAAR… a figurehead.

    Imagine a UK comp where our players get paid in pounds… just thinking out loud… imagine the Lions franchise being able to operate free from GLRU but under SARU auspices… imagine the Stormers and Sharks doing that too…

  5. Without our money Aus and NZ rugby dies

    Without pounds and euros ours dies…

    Easy choice.

    Long term benefit of killing the All Blacks and turning them into a bigger version of Samoa.

  6. To me it’s pretty simple too.

    2 major factors are damaging our game beyond repair:

    Foreign Currencies

    By being paid in pounds sterling, there is far less of an incentive to leave the shores and play abroad.

    Politics I do believe will get kicked into the corner by professionalism, the money buys the whiskey, and the best players and coaches bring the money, regardless of their skin colour.

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