Richard Ferguson

Statement from the Sharks

Written by Richard Ferguson (Richard Ferguson)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks on 14 Jun 2013 at 13:43
Tagged with : , , , , , , , , ,

Following the recent comments made in the media regarding the decision made by John Smit to announce the news of Brendan Venter and the future of John Plumtree, The Sharks released a press release stating the following:

The Sharks Board backs John Smit

I thank you for your interest in The Sharks. Although one may wish to discretely follow a chosen strategy, I do believe The Sharks to be public property and the public are deserving of clarification of major decisions made.

The Board has resolved to appoint John Smit. John is a legend of South African Rugby. It was felt that the Board could assist in the commercial running of the business but needed a CEO who truly understands the engine room of rugby. The reality, we are all acutely aware of, is regardless of commercial success, the public barometer of success by which The Sharks are measured, is winning.

We felt that John would not only stand the best chance of achieving these objectives but also felt that his presence and leadership will provide a conducive environment to inspire and guide all stakeholders. John enjoys the unanimous support of the entire Board.

We recognise too that John may not have all the commercial experience yet. We have a Board and a management team to guide him in these areas. Our advice to John was, listen carefully before acting and at all times be honest and transparent. Recent actions may seem to contradict the advice given. However, the actions taken were not malicious and are explained below.

John Plumtree, who has served The Sharks with both loyalty and much success and, not withstanding that he has a contract until the end of 2013, he needed certainty on his future beyond that. He informed The Sharks that he had been approached with other options to consider and personal issues viz schooling that needed addressing.

The easiest decision and the line of least resistance for John Smit to take would have been to say “He needed time”, he could have delayed his call for months until he was entrenched as CEO.

However, consistent with both his own integrity and the Board’s guidance on Honesty and Transparency, he grasped the nettle and did not opt for the expedient approach. This approach was also in part accelerated by comments attributed to Nick Mallet and then taken to end further destructive speculation.

John Smit, has a vision on how he wants to run The Sharks and the Board cannot ask him as CEO to take accountability and then choose his team for him. These are really tough decisions and are never clean cut. John Smit has had the benefit of playing under both coaches and rates them both highly. The intensity of the debate is a positive reflection of the performance of John Plumtree. John Smit is our chosen leader and a man of substance. He has made his choice and I can only ask Shark supporters to get behind him and the team as our season unfolds.

A further issue, I would like to address is the Liquor Board matter.

Contrary to some public opinion, The Sharks are working actively in trying to reach an acceptable conclusion here. We would like things to remain as they were but we need to act responsibly and acknowledge:

We have had a tragic death at our stadium.
Irresponsible abuse of alcohol is a scourge in our society and it will not be encouraged in our stadium.
The Liquor Board has a duty to make sure that the above areas are properly addressed.

We are engaging with the authorities. We sense your frustration, but given the magnitude of the issues, we cannot promise overnight resolution. We can tell you that the authorities to date, have not been obstructive but driven by a sincere desire to find solutions that address both safety and the need for responsible drinking particularly given the family environment that we wish to retain at KINGS PARK.

Change is always traumatic. There is no easy way to deal with change. However, The Sharks are in a new era. We, the Board, are positive that the changes made, will with the passing of time, be shown to build on the solid platform created at The Sharks.

Thank you for all the support, interest and loyalty, you have demonstrated to The Sharks. John and team, through both their performance and conduct, will endeavor to repay this loyalty to you both on and off the field.

Issued By

Stephen Saad
Chairman of The Sharks (PTY) Ltd


  • well done Mr Saad. Well said, honest, open and forthright.

    We are in good hands.

  • Comment 1, posted at 14.06.13 13:44:39 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Well done, let’s hope this starts a new era of honesty and transparency. 😎

  • Comment 2, posted at 14.06.13 13:47:04 by Pokkel Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Author
  • Excellently managed.

    Now, will some old coots kindly take a frosty glass of shut-the-f-up and sit down?

  • Comment 3, posted at 14.06.13 13:50:51 by Big Fish Reply
    Big Fish
  • open and honest with nothing to hide. Keep it up Sharks. Get the info out before rumors start and damage control is needed

  • Comment 4, posted at 14.06.13 13:51:32 by The Hobbit Reply
    The Hobbit
  • We can’t ask for more. Thanks Mr. Saad!

  • Comment 5, posted at 14.06.13 13:52:09 by rhineshark Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Spirit of Rugby
  • Ja nee Mr Jamieson can also shut up now.

  • Comment 6, posted at 14.06.13 13:56:59 by Uli Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Uli Boelie
  • brilliant and it helps ease any concerns that may arise

  • Comment 7, posted at 14.06.13 13:58:14 by Dunx Reply

  • A good time for some changes in the Shark camp…

    A lot of big changes in a short time though…but Bredon is a great coach and John a great leader…so I am sure they can manage the change well and ensure that it does not have a big impact if any on the Sharks performance…

  • Comment 8, posted at 14.06.13 14:19:52 by Hmmm Reply

  • Sharks under Brendon and Lions under Ackerman we could see a repeat of the 90’s….

  • Comment 9, posted at 14.06.13 14:23:38 by Hmmm Reply

  • I support your decision John.

  • Comment 10, posted at 14.06.13 14:25:13 by GreatSharksays Reply

  • Maybe teamsheets might get announced earlier as well 😉

  • Comment 11, posted at 14.06.13 14:33:20 by JustPlainSHARK Reply

  • Either way, good job going forward and oiling the machine.

  • Comment 12, posted at 14.06.13 14:36:45 by JustPlainSHARK Reply

  • Jeez, when last did we get a press release as forthright at that one that from the Sharks? 😯

  • Comment 13, posted at 14.06.13 15:14:33 by vanmartin Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • Well said Sharks. I also think that it is time for change. It has seemed in recent months that the Sharks has stagnated and this makes it difficult to win.
    There needs however to be more changes made…. Rudolf the red brown nose reindeer needs to go. He is partly responsible for a lot of negativity under the players and in the franchise as a whole.

    Lastly, John Smit…. we support you!

  • Comment 14, posted at 14.06.13 15:40:35 by Kaygee Reply

  • @Kaygee (Comment 14) : Please elaborate about Straueli, you seem to be well connected – spill the beans.

  • Comment 15, posted at 14.06.13 15:43:00 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the Subtle
  • Johnie Smit, cut these lazy sluggards to shreds. Do as you please, because surely it can’t get any worse than it currently stands.

  • Comment 16, posted at 14.06.13 15:54:02 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 16) : yeah baby

  • Comment 17, posted at 14.06.13 16:57:03 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Nick mallet has been appointed onto the IRB committee

  • Comment 18, posted at 14.06.13 18:09:02 by Dunx Reply

  • @Dunx (Comment 18) : so his gone by the sharks i hope

  • Comment 19, posted at 14.06.13 18:28:06 by sharks4eve2013 Reply

  • @Dunx (Comment 18) : Nick Mallett can suck my…. oh wait, did I just type that?

  • Comment 20, posted at 14.06.13 20:06:06 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • The sentiment may be there but still, it is very poorly drafted. Grammatically, and very long winded. Seems to me the Sharks need someone to write their press releases properly.

  • Comment 21, posted at 14.06.13 22:05:09 by Feather Reply

    Gold's Member
  • Take up the feather and write them press releases Feather

  • Comment 22, posted at 15.06.13 09:40:57 by JustPlainSHARK Reply

  • @robdylan (Comment 20) : Rob Rob Rob do you really want him to touch that? 😈 hell I wound not even $h!+ on him if someone paid me!!!!!!! 😡

  • Comment 23, posted at 15.06.13 21:29:03 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
  • Now that the dust is starting to settle, I suspect we will now see who renew and who don’t renew contract in Durban. It should also remind us then who is in who’s corner, the pro and the anti JS.

  • Comment 24, posted at 16.06.13 18:19:23 by Gerhardt Reply

  • @Gerhardt (Comment 24) : who’s this SA coach that’s going to be appointed by us?

  • Comment 25, posted at 16.06.13 22:57:56 by GreatSharksays Reply


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