Home Opinion Serfontein: SARU rotting from the head down

Serfontein: SARU rotting from the head down


664dc0f6bbd042da9a71f7b948b568b7Former Springbok scrumhalf Divan Serfontein has hit out at the top brass of the South African Rugby Union (SARU).

SARU has come under fire in recent times for its handling of the Jurie Roux bonus scandal saga, as well as its delay in naming Heyneke Meyer’s successor as Springbok coach.

Serfontein formed part of a discussion panel hosted by Die Burger at the Klein Karoo Nasionale Kunstefees in Oudtshoorn this past weekend.

There the former WP captain hit out at the country’s national rugby governing body.

“A fish rots from its head down,” said Serfontein, referring to SARU.

“There are people at SARU who are there for their own personal gain. Remember, rugby does not belong to SARU. Rugby belongs to all South Africans. We must not allow them to take over and just enrich themselves through our sport.”

Serfontein also feels transformation is not dealt with in the right manner in South Africa.

“Nowadays, transformation has become an abusive word. But we have to look at with clear heads. It shouldn’t only be about more black and coloured players in the Springbok team. When we talk about transformation, we have to refer to all racial groups, because there is inequality amongst all people.

“Take for example young rugby players. At universities there are about 800 good players, but only 200 get picked to go and play for big clubs. What happens to the remaining 600?

“Even the senior players who earn millions… one day when you retire, what do you do? The millions won’t last forever. We have to look at ways to develop rugby players, not just on the field but also in their personal lives.”

Serfontein, who played 19 Tests for the Springboks between 1980 and 1984, was also happy that a new Springbok coach will be appointed.

“I’m just very happy that Heyneke Meyer is not there anymore. Just look at what he did with players like Rudy Paige. And then he has the audacity to blame it on the players when the team plays poorly.”

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  1. Blaming Heyneke Meyer for having to appease last minute politician’s ultimatums is a bit rich.

  2. @bryce_in_oz:

    Heyneke had other options through last year to actually pick players of colour that were on form (Jantjies, Mapoe for instance), to be in a situation where he had to pick Paige out of the blue to make the books balance, is as much his fault as it was SARU’s.

  3. @Craven:

    I am with Craven on this…

    Earlier in the season highly in form competent and excellent black players were performing and available.

    Meyer just refused to acknowledge them… which forced him into having to be faced with a politicians ultimatum.

    Partially of his own doing.

    That said Serfontein has taken to a habit of squealing whenever he is unhappy about what he sees. The good doctor should understand the game has moved on from where a couple of policemen, students and young profesiionals and artesans got together got noname rugby shirts, played a lekker game, had a dop afterwards and on Monday went back to work…

  4. @DavidS: @Craven: That head clown Mr (Slapgat) Hoskins is as guilty, he is suppose to sign off the team and the WC squad, why now only blame Meyer?

    He should have been held responsible with Meyer. But he did an Hudini again and made sure all the blame only rest on Meyer.

  5. @Craven:


    Mapoe was injured every time he was included in a training squad hence no RWC for him. Jantjes was behind Pollard, Lambie and trusted NH goal kicker Morne Steyn… no RWC for him!

    Paige instantly leap-frogged both training squad members Reinach and De Flerk and Kolisi instantly leap-frogged Marcell Coetzee and Brussouw clearly on orders from higher powers… so turn it up mate!

  6. @bryce_in_oz:

    Where do you get you “facts”?

    Mapoe replaced Pietersen in the matchday 23 against NZ last year and got a couple of minutes on the field at the end. Surely he couldn’t have been too injured then? If you as a coach know the pressure is on in a world cup year, why on earth would you not try and give in-form players of colour more opportunities? Remember also the debacle against Argentina when Kriel was picked on the wing (a position he hadn’t played all year) in place of Mvovo?


    And the when Mapoe and Jantjies were dropped from the bigger squad, they immediately departed for Japan. Surely Mapoe couldn’t have been too injured then?


  7. HM also selected the Coenie Oosthuizen ahead of Kitshoff and Kitshoff buggered off to France. For this I really blame Meyer.

  8. @Boertjie:

    Hadn’t even thought of that, but yes, Heyneke obviously rated Coenie much higher than most pundits did, persisting with the tighthead experiment while we had proper tightheads at the Lions raring to go.

    Reckon Kitshoff will represent France in due time.

  9. @Boertjie: Oom there are so many factors that comes into play, and decisions made last year send us into this.

    That’s why I said the other day that we should change the title to manager and not a coach.

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