Now this is just bizarre.
Again, Bernie Habana is at the centre of the controversy – as you may know, he is Bryan Habana’s father, as well as Bakkies Botha’s agent. Botha wants to be released from his Bulls contract to go and play for Toulon in the French second division. This would happen in April, meaning that Bakkies, already out for the first 3 weeks of the Super 14, would only play 3 games in total for the Pretoria franchise this year.
Rugby is about willing buyer-willing seller, after all. Habana already used an offer from the Sharks to up Botha’s worth in Pretoria about 2 years ago, so we have to assume that this request is genuine. The Bulls would struggle to find the sort of money that the frogs are offering anyway – it is rumoured to be double. Hold out for more, Bakkies… the cost of living is high.
So – Bakkies wants to join Victor. But Victor is coming back in June. Or is he? Because Heyneke Meyer is not with the Bulls, the Boks, or Toulon. Meyer is peddling supplements these days. I wouldn’t be too surprised if Bakkies and Victor have both decided that given the uncertainty about the Bok picture and the fact that their beloved Bulls team is now in the hands of the somewhat dodgy Frans Ludeke, they would do better to stuff their bank accounts while acquiring a taste for escargot. That might not happen, though, as the Bulls are rumoured to be demanding Victor’s return before releasing Bakkies. It’s a bit like a weird hostage drama.
I wouldn’t be too surprised to see the two of them continue their formidable partnership at Toulon. Once Harlequins decide to offload Gary Botha, maybe he’ll be over there too. And once Bernie gets a taste of what a really juicy foreign placement fee looks like, don’t fall over backwards if suddenly there is substance to the Bryan-Bayonne rumour.
The only one who really loses out is Dr Francois van Schouwenberg who in a truly ironic twist should find himself warming a bench in a different country, behind the same two guys that kept him out in Pretoria. So are the days of our lives…Tweet