KSA Shark ©

Will SA sacrifice S14 Players?

Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark ©)

Posted in :In the news, Super 14 on 14 Mar 2008 at 08:38
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South African rugby administrators will sacrifice their best players if they agree to drastic Super-14 format changes that the Australians are proposing.

This is the what Super Rugby experts Rudy Joubert and Henry Kelbrick thought about the Australian Rugby Union’s “facelift” proposals for the competition.

Morris Gilbert writes in Beeld that John O’Neill, chief executive of the ARU, told an Australian newspaper that his vision for a longer, bigger and more exciting Super Series was already being discussed at a high level.

Whether these discussions include South Africa was not clear. Jonathan Stones, managing director of SA Rugby, was locked in a meeting with Fifa soccer officials on Thursday and could not be reached for comment.

O’Neill wanted the Super 14 to be enlarged by at least one more team, with Japan joining the Tri-Nations alliance of South Africa, Australia and New Zealand.

If the Australian proposals are accepted, the Super Series will run over 26 weeks, from February to August. Only then will the Tri-Nations series and home test matches against northern-hemisphere countries get under way.

Could mean the end of the Currie Cup

This could result in leading players turning out in roughly 22 Super Rugby matches before their international commitments start.

The tournament would be in a two-round format, with a full round-robin phase followed by a round featuring “local derbies” among the home teams of Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.

Joubert, a former Bulls coach, said it would take a lot for the players to maintain the pace, intensity and competitiveness of the Super-14 competition for such a long period.

“Even if you have a big squad, I can’t see that the proposed amendments will even see the light,” Joubert said on Thursday.

“In addition to the huge toll it may extract from our best players, an extension of the Super 14 can also mean the end of Currie Cup rugby.”

Joubert felt the Australians would be hardest hit if the competition were extended because they did not have nearly the depth that South Africa and New Zealand had.

“To me it seems the ARU’s proposals are aimed at a kind of remuneration package for their own people because they do not have a strong provincial competition such as the Currie Cup and the Air New Zealand Cup.”

Kelbrick, a sports medicine expert and former Bulls team doctor, said, “The rev counter is already in red. We can’t expect our top players to play more rugby.

“The Super 14 is tough and exhausting and already demands a lot from every player who now has to play in a maximum of 15 matches.”


  • I tend to agree that it will mess up our season.


    Super Rugby experts Rudy Joubert and Henry Kelbrick thought about the Australian Rugby Union’s “facelift” proposals for the competition
    Who are these two EXPERTS?

  • Comment 1, posted at 14.03.08 11:33:34 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • personally i think the sa teams will leave when this happens. the only way a competition like this will make a financial success is if the competition starts with a competition between the domestic teams at the beginning of the season (currie cup could be moved to february) the top two teams from each country 6 to six countries then play eachother in a super comp. any other way of doing it will burn out players and seriously damage rugby. fans won’t be interested in an eight month tournament. another area that needs to be looked at is the tri nations. the only way another country can join the trinations is if the tri nations is hosted by a different country each year. so sa, arg aus and nz will host the tournament every 4 years. this will stop teams benefitting from other teams travelling daunting distances before a test..

  • Comment 2, posted at 14.03.08 12:54:37 by try time Reply
  • This will never ever happen.

    NZ simply wont allow it as it’ll decimate the NPC.

    This is just o’Neill being o’Neill and floating self-serving ideas.

  • Comment 3, posted at 14.03.08 13:07:57 by VinChainSaw Reply
  • i think south african fans are getting gatvol of getting the raw end of the super 14 yet our stands are fuller than our antipodean counterparts. i am sure saffas will happily embrace a comp that is a lot less tiring on our players.

  • Comment 4, posted at 14.03.08 13:24:24 by try time Reply

  • O’Neil is a joke. Does he really think our rugby administartors are that stupid ? Oh wait, I’m getting a bad feeling…

    An who the fuck is going to watch a midweek Test ?

  • Comment 5, posted at 14.03.08 16:19:32 by yossarian Reply

  • Sounds like a brilliant opportunity to get off work early

  • Comment 6, posted at 14.03.08 16:49:16 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator

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