Rugby: Sharks try to force Lions’ hand after complaint to Saru over Alberts and Ludik

2010-01-28 00:00

THE Sharks have finally shaken the Lions and the SA Rugby Union (Saru) into action over the signing of Louis Ludik and Willem Alberts.

The two former Lions signed contracts with the Sharks in November, and have been receiving their salaries from the Durban franchise, but have yet to gain clearance from the Lions.

Saru refused to become involved in the dispute in spite of repeated requests from the Sharks. Finally, in an attempt to force the Lions’ hand and galvanise Saru into action, the Sharks fielded Alberts in the friendly against the Western Force in Cape Town on Tuesday.

The Lions responded by laying a complaint with Saru yesterday. In papers submitted to Saru, the Lions alleged that the Sharks had not secured the necessary clearance certificates required to secure the services of the players.

The Lions said that the players remain under contract to them.

The Lions allege that this constituted a breach of Saru regulations relating to the movement of players and asked Saru to investigate the complaint.

Saru has referred the matter to Judge Lex Mpati, the chairman of the judicial committee, who will appoint a disciplinary committee to hear the matter.

Sharks CEO Brian van Zyl told The Witness yesterday that he is delighted the matter will finally be resolved.

“We have been trying to get Saru to end this dispute as they are obliged to do. We believe we have a strong case.

“Both Alberts and Ludik have the same contracts as Jaque Fourie had with the Lions and he won his case when he went to a Saru arbitration hearing late last year.

“It was found that his contract was not binding for 2010,” said Van Zyl.

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