robdylan

Smit: the new broom not afraid to sweep


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks on 13 May 2013 at 09:59
Tagged with : , , , , ,

In an interesting interview with the Sunday Times’ Craig Ray yesterday, incoming Sharks CEO John Smit hinted at changes to the Union’s management structure when he takes over in July.

Smit called time on an impressive playing career yesterday, when his Saracans outfit were outclassed by Northampton in the English league semi-final and will now return to Durban post-haste, to begin his new challenge as CEO. Smit told Ray that “the hardest part will be having to make tough decisions about the futures of people I know and in some cases have been close to in the past.” Adding that he’ll “never take please in firing someone but it is part of the job.” Cause indeed for speculation that Smit already has one or two people in mind that are overdue an axing.

Fans disgruntled about the current run of awful results will, of course, immediately jump to the conclusion that Smit is referring to the current coaching team, but further quotes in the story from Board Chariman Steven Saad suggest that Smit will bring “a fundamental understanding of the value of Player A versus Player B”, something which I would think currently fits squarely into Commercial Director Rudolf Straeuli’s portfolio. A tongue-in-cheek, yet perhaps also insightful tweet from Bakkies Botha to Smit last night, mentioning “Staaldraad” in reference to boardroom politics, made me wonder even more.

Then again, Saad did also mention that the abaility to assess the quality and performance of the coaching staff will be a key value that Smit brings to the table, an indication that the board feels, perhaps, that the current upper management structure within the union may just be a little too far removed from day-to-day “rugby matters” to be truly effective.

Only time will tell exactly what Smit has in mind, but you can be assured that the next few months will be interesting times indeed for the Sharks.



59 Comments

  • I’ve had the feeling since the news of Smit’s appointment was announced that Streauli needs to get his CV in order. Don’t know why though.

  • Comment 1, posted at 13.05.13 10:09:33 by PTAShark Reply
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  • I would be very surprised if Plum and co make it to the currie cup, let alone 2014

  • Comment 2, posted at 13.05.13 10:22:21 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
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  • I have said it and will say it again. if your staff, in any organisation, are slapgat and disinterested in their work, the blame must be put squarely on slapgat management. :evil:

  • Comment 3, posted at 13.05.13 10:24:44 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
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  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 2) : I would rather have a new coaching team find their feet in the Currie Cup than having to start in the Super 15.

    However at the same time I would prefer a proper vetting process, and not just the one standard question – when did you play for the Sharks? We really need a top class coaching team – no matter where they from.

  • Comment 4, posted at 13.05.13 10:26:22 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • If they post the whole coaching squad, who’ll step in? Mallet? Stonehouse? Where is Macenzie going, since he finishes with the Reds this year? Or a european?

  • Comment 5, posted at 13.05.13 10:27:18 by PTAShark Reply
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  • I foresee lots of pain for Sharks supporters on the horizon.

  • Comment 6, posted at 13.05.13 10:27:45 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • When did Steauli join again? Wasn’t it 2009?

    He might be the first to go, but he will definitely not be the last. Start checking out Smit’s friend list and we’ll get an idea of who’s going :twisted:

  • Comment 7, posted at 13.05.13 10:29:38 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @Salmonoid (Comment 6) : Can’t be worse than we currently have to endure.

    Roll out the old “re-building” catch phrase and we’ll be patient for another season or two. :lol:

  • Comment 8, posted at 13.05.13 10:32:13 by FireTheLooser Reply

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  • @PTAShark (Comment 5) : I feel that Ewen Mckenzie would be ideal for the Sharks!

  • Comment 9, posted at 13.05.13 10:32:25 by josefgremlin Reply

    josefgremlinVodacom Cup player
     
  • @josefgremlin (Comment 9) : It’ll be awesome if we’d manage to pull it off.

  • Comment 10, posted at 13.05.13 10:35:01 by PTAShark Reply
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  • @josefgremlin (Comment 9) : No no, can’t replace one antipodean with another.

    Make Mallet director of rugby and Stonehouse head coach. Super Rugby championship here we come.

  • Comment 11, posted at 13.05.13 10:35:02 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 7) : I also have a feeling that he might be referring to Butch James, who is clearly at the end of his career and a close friend of Smit’s

  • Comment 12, posted at 13.05.13 10:36:12 by josefgremlin Reply

    josefgremlinVodacom Cup player
     
  • @josefgremlin (Comment 12) : Butch only has a year contract if memory serves.

  • Comment 13, posted at 13.05.13 10:38:02 by PTAShark Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 8) : It can be a lot worse. We all know we have a talented group of players on our books at the moment – well imagine if we lost lots of those and did not get like replacements in for them. But then the rebuilding phase would be true.

  • Comment 14, posted at 13.05.13 10:38:13 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 11) : Pretty sure if you appoint both we’d have no money for players! If they are looking at Mallet he’ll be damn expensive.

  • Comment 15, posted at 13.05.13 10:40:35 by PTAShark Reply
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  • isn’t plums contract up in any case at the end of this S15

  • Comment 16, posted at 13.05.13 10:42:59 by MJ Reply

    MJUnder 21 player
     
  • Butch for kicking coach

  • Comment 17, posted at 13.05.13 10:45:49 by robdylan Reply
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  • @PTAShark (Comment 15) : I think Mallet is just burning with the desire to coach a Super rugby team. And one team in particular. The only team where he uses the word “we” instead of “they”…

  • Comment 18, posted at 13.05.13 10:46:59 by King Shark Reply
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    King SharkVodacom Cup player
     
  • @MJ (Comment 16) : no – end of the year

  • Comment 19, posted at 13.05.13 10:49:01 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 14) : I hear you, but I don’t understand why you think that’s going to happen…

  • Comment 20, posted at 13.05.13 10:49:30 by robdylan Reply
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  • @MJ (Comment 16) : I think so, or after the CC.

  • Comment 21, posted at 13.05.13 10:49:43 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 17) : to kick what? kick people in the face? :D

  • Comment 22, posted at 13.05.13 10:53:52 by Uli Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
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  • @PTAShark (Comment 5) : I’ve always rated Stonehouse. I seriously dont see how we can afford Mckenzie. Hes on his way to much bigger things. Same with Mallet, I cant see him getting back to coaching SR level. To me, Brendan Venter fits perfectly. Utterly professional and vat nie kak van kaboutertjies nie

  • Comment 23, posted at 13.05.13 10:53:55 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
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  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 23) : Brendan might be the right man, only time will tell.

  • Comment 24, posted at 13.05.13 10:54:59 by Uli Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
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  • There are good coaches around. For example I have never heard of Matt Sexton before but he has achieved a lot with the Kings – given that he had very little time to prepare and a squad with very few stars.

  • Comment 25, posted at 13.05.13 10:57:47 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • Serious consideration must be given to the role of back-line coaches and skills consultants.
    I’ve never seen a Sharks back-line play as badly as in 2013, there is no evidence that any back-line coaching has made any difference. As David Campese was observing: ‘The Sharks back-line simply shuffle the ball down the back-line to the touchline where JP and Mvovo are expected to perform miracles”.
    Skills consultants? What skills? 18 handling errors in one game suggests that no transference of any skills coaching has taken place. I just hope John Smit has the insight and courage to question exactly what value people like Bashford, Reece-Edwards and Carlos Spencer add in the long-term…

  • Comment 26, posted at 13.05.13 10:57:57 by CapeShark Reply
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    The Great Couch SharkSuper Rugby player
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 20) : No special reason for believing it, but we have a core of really good players that have been with the Sharks and each other for a good while now and some allegiances would have surely been formed which may affect how they (the players)feel about some of the decisions that are going to be made.
    Anyway its all speculation at this stage so its really a moot point speculating who is going to get the chop or not, for all we know its the car guard and cashier at gate 8.

  • Comment 27, posted at 13.05.13 10:58:24 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Bokhoring (Comment 25) : Exactly. His worth is being demonstrated clearly there. The Kings are basically a second division team with first-class coaching.
    We’re a first-class team (even with injuries) being driven into the ground by third-rate coaches.

  • Comment 28, posted at 13.05.13 10:59:58 by CapeShark Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 14) : Nope, John Smit is well respected by players and coaches alike. I think players will be far more willing to play for a union where the CEO is a former world cup winning and centurion Springbok captain.

    Finally the CEO will understand the players point of view and the union will be run with the sole aim of getting the most out of your athletes.

  • Comment 29, posted at 13.05.13 11:00:24 by FireTheLooser Reply

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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 27) : No not the cashier at gate no 8, rather the bad bar lady at gate 11, for closing shop when she was suppose to keep our beers cold.

  • Comment 30, posted at 13.05.13 11:01:50 by Uli Reply
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  • Anyone, who has ever analysed the contents of an interview with a newly appointed director/manager before he’s even stepped into the job will know that trying to read ANYTHING into it is futile, especially where national or domestic South African rugby is concerned.

    Anyone remember Oregan Hoskins and his noble intentions?

  • Comment 31, posted at 13.05.13 11:02:36 by rhineshark Reply
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  • I’d love if they pulled Stonehouse in even as assistant/currie cup coach. Dude has been working miracles with the Pumas.

  • Comment 32, posted at 13.05.13 11:04:33 by PTAShark Reply
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  • @PTAShark (Comment 32) : 2 wins in the 2011 CC premier division and 9 from 14 in die first division in 2012 for an overall second place. Vodacom Cup he managed 4 from 8 in 2011, 4 from 6 in 2012, and 5 from 7 in 2013.

    Stonehouse might be good but I am not sure why everybody is raving about him yet. His results in the Vodacom Cup have steadily improved but beyond that have not impressed me all that much (yet).

  • Comment 33, posted at 13.05.13 11:11:41 by King Shark Reply
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    King SharkVodacom Cup player
     
  • @King Shark (Comment 33) : He’s doing damn well with limited resources. Have you seen the Pumas backline? They have better attacking plans than we have at the moment, so give the dude a shot.

  • Comment 34, posted at 13.05.13 11:14:05 by PTAShark Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 29) :Its surely wont do any harm having a high profile, world cup winning, legend running the show at the Sharks or any union for that matter but that in itself will not guarantee success or that players will be lining up to play for that union.

    Smitty is a great rugby man, its not guaranteed that he will be a great CEO.

  • Comment 35, posted at 13.05.13 11:16:40 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @PTAShark (Comment 32) : He is an outstanding coach. A team with Mallet as director of rugby and Stonehouse as coach would be ideal.

  • Comment 36, posted at 13.05.13 11:16:52 by steve Reply

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  • @King Shark (Comment 33) : @PTAShark (Comment 34) : Stonehouse is good but in all honesty the divide between Vodacom Cup, Currie Cup and Super Rugby is immense, thats not saying he wouldnt be able to cut it but there would surely have to be an apprenticeship to be served before getting a head coach post at Super franchise.

  • Comment 37, posted at 13.05.13 11:22:11 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 35) : That’s probably the greatest concern, will Smit be able to hack it as a CEO…only time will tell, I have however always believed him to be a better leader than rugby player.

  • Comment 38, posted at 13.05.13 11:25:34 by FireTheLooser Reply

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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 38) : I loved Smittie as a player too, but his strenght as a player most probably were mostly due to his excellent leadership.

  • Comment 39, posted at 13.05.13 11:30:56 by Ice Reply
    Competition Winner IceAssistant coach
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 38) : I am always a bit concerned when people just walk straight into a position without doing some of the hard yards in that field. My concerns are tempered a bit by knowing that Barney is an exceptional leader and are sure to have the Sharks well-being at heart.

  • Comment 40, posted at 13.05.13 11:39:38 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 37) : @PTAShark (Comment 34) : Doesn’t take much to look better than the Sharks’ backline ;-)

    That said, Stonehouse might be like a breath of fresh air.

  • Comment 41, posted at 13.05.13 11:56:49 by King Shark Reply
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    King SharkVodacom Cup player
     
  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 23) : So you think SS pays him a fortune! Forget Stonehouse. Going for a coach with a track record. Break the bank for Mallet, I’m in no mood for more pain so no with the Stonehouse experiment.

  • Comment 42, posted at 13.05.13 12:06:27 by GreatSharksays Reply

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  • @King Shark (Comment 41) : And Pumas forwards resemble a fist when they play.

    Remember Stonehouse got his nobody Pumas into CC premier division and managed to win his relegation games against EP after he lost some of his big playmakers to them.

    He still managed to keep the Pumas together after forced relegation to the CC first division and this year he’s in the VC final – who cares if they only managed to win two games for the entire season.

    Sharks XV ended up top of the log and lost their first play-off game.

    Make the play-offs and win, that’s what it’s about, Stonehouse seems to understand that. ;-)

  • Comment 43, posted at 13.05.13 12:07:34 by FireTheLooser Reply

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  • @GreatSharksays (Comment 42) : Im with you, if he is at all interested take the piggie bank to the friendly butcher

  • Comment 44, posted at 13.05.13 12:11:25 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
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  • @GreatSharksays (Comment 42) : Stonehouse hasn’t even coached a CC side, noways.

  • Comment 45, posted at 13.05.13 12:13:35 by GreatSharksays Reply

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  • Cat amongst pigeons time! What about John Mitchell as head coach or Jake White when he has finished with the Brumbies?Dick Muir? I think that they should have Campese back as backline coach. Straeuli definitely will have to send his CV out. Maybe join the Bulls to keep their player/s at the union.Do you think Alan Solomons would consider the job? Just thinking aloud.Closer to home,though,we need to be grooming a new captain for the S15 & CC sides.Maybe Bismarck? :o

  • Comment 46, posted at 13.05.13 12:18:04 by markm Reply

    markmVodacom Cup player
     
  • John Mitchell started well at both the Force and Lions, and then at some point the wheels came off. Jake still has around 2 years on his Brumbies contract.

    The only thing I want is that the Sharks do a proper coaching interview process this time, and get a decent technical committee to review the applications. If Plum’s contract is up at the end of the year, they may as well start advertising the position after the S15. I am sure they will get some decent coaches applying.

  • Comment 47, posted at 13.05.13 12:23:08 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • @GreatSharksays (Comment 45) : Sure he did. Pumas played CC and whupped the Kings in promotion/relegation games.

  • Comment 48, posted at 13.05.13 12:31:44 by PTAShark Reply
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  • What’s the use of having a bank if you don’t break it every now and then. If we don’t do something big soon, KP will be left empty, less bucks. So break now, cash in later! Mallet, Stonehouse, Campese, anyone have Percy’s number? Get a nice shopping list together, we have the players already, let’s get the right people in to mold them

  • Comment 49, posted at 13.05.13 12:57:04 by Die Kriek Reply

    Super Rugby player
     
  • @markm (Comment 46) :

    I get tired of these suggestions that everybody makes:

    John Mitchell was shit everywhere he coached and he is even worse at player relations than Plum.

    Dick Muir proved to be extremely incompetent at both the Lions and Springboks (the boks scored even fewer tries per game with Dick coaching the backs than what they did with Alistair).

    Jake has at least another two seasons after this to go with the Brumbies.

    Alan Solomons is committed to the Eastern Cape.

    For those who suggested Ewen McKenzie – the rumour mill has had him pegged for Wallabies coach post the Lions tour.

    Stonehouse has potential but no real credentials.

    Everitt too has potential but also no credentials. He further has the burden of the Sharks choking legacy.

    I am not sure what Brendan Venter’s availability is but he has achieved success with Saracens.

    Mallet has been the most successful Springbok coach after Kitch Christie and he is not currently committed to any union.

  • Comment 50, posted at 13.05.13 13:10:44 by King Shark Reply
    Author
    King SharkVodacom Cup player
     
  • @King Shark (Comment 50) : @markm (Comment 46) : Sorry, just realised that I sounded overly critical of you – not the intent.

  • Comment 51, posted at 13.05.13 13:12:30 by King Shark Reply
    Author
    King SharkVodacom Cup player
     
  • @King Shark (Comment 50) : Mallet just signed a 3 yead eal with Super Sport so I can’t see him coaching the sharks anytime soon. Although I believe it would be great!

  • Comment 52, posted at 13.05.13 13:26:30 by Viking Reply
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    VikingCurrie Cup player
     
  • @King Shark (Comment 50) : Only thing we can do is speculate. It’s fun!

  • Comment 53, posted at 13.05.13 13:28:27 by PTAShark Reply
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  • @PTAShark (Comment 53) : Sad that we have to speculate about this crap, rather than which starting XV will run out for the final. :oops:

  • Comment 54, posted at 13.05.13 13:33:11 by King Shark Reply
    Author
    King SharkVodacom Cup player
     
  • @Viking (Comment 52) : So did Victot.

  • Comment 55, posted at 13.05.13 13:55:18 by GreatSharksays Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @King Shark (Comment 51) : No offence taken. That is the great thing about this forum.None of the suggestions I made will bear fruit in the Sharks camp.Reasons: – Firstly, who is our director of rugby/coaching?Secondly, why are there no contingency or succession plans in place for seamless continuation if new personnel come in and lastly,whatever happened to playing for the team (or jersey).

  • Comment 56, posted at 13.05.13 14:07:08 by markm Reply

    markmVodacom Cup player
     
  • @markm (Comment 56) : Yep. Rugby might have entered the professional era in the sense that players make careers out of it, but the professionalism of the organisations are still sorely lacking.

  • Comment 57, posted at 13.05.13 14:12:28 by King Shark Reply
    Author
    King SharkVodacom Cup player
     
  • @Viking (Comment 52) : They also released Joost very quickly after he decided to take some “extra-curricular activities” ;-)

  • Comment 58, posted at 13.05.13 14:14:14 by King Shark Reply
    Author
    King SharkVodacom Cup player
     
  • @King Shark (Comment 58) : So all we need is a cheap girl, cake flower, 1 pair of socks with holes in them and a video recorder?

  • Comment 59, posted at 13.05.13 15:02:32 by Viking Reply
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    VikingCurrie Cup player
     

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