SARU must look long term

Oregan Hoskins (Gallo Images)
Oregan Hoskins (Gallo Images)
The exodus of top rugby players is money, or call it financial security.

The underlying problem is the unrealistic "ambitions" of the SARB. I forecasted on Sport24 last year, that the Kings would play Super 15 for just one year, and then its a case of them have "climbed up one step and slipped two". Well history does not lie in this case, and almost all the players and coaching staff have left the Kings. It was a predictable disaster.

Now the SARB wants 6 SA teams in the Super 16! The reality is that firstly we have not got the depth of quality players to justify 6 teams in the Super 16. Just imagine the Lions and Kings have been in the Super 16 this year; 15th and 16th my guess, and where were the quality players to have come from?

The second point is that 6 teams playing at that level, results in limited funds available for the top franchises/provinces to retain the top players, as well as the required player depth to compete consistently throughout the long seaon. Rugby cannot afford 6 teams at that level in SA.

The reality is that as much as we would like to have six franchises competing in Super 15, and as much as we want rugby in all the provinces to be competing in the Curie Cup, it won't happen. The facts: Kings are from Super 15 to Vodacom Cup!

Therefore we end up with the present situation where even the top 5 franchises cannot afford competitive contracts any longer. The gate takings from Currie Cup games are apparently declining rapidly, and sponsorships are not easy to attract.

Lets us take a long-term view of the game before we lose the best players; the Super 15, Currie Cup and other competitions will suffer further, and as the funds dry up the Exodus of Players accelerates.

We must protect and support the top 5 franchises financially at all cost. Please SARB; don't tell WPRFU where to hold there allocated international games; Newlands has been and will always be in the same league as Twickenham, Murrayfield etc.
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