Unions at loggerheads over Bok coach

Heyneke Meyer (AP)
Heyneke Meyer (AP)

Cape Town - South Africa’s provincial rugby unions are reportedly at loggerheads over whether Heyneke Meyer should remain as Springbok coach.

Meyer’s position has been a hot talking point in recent times after the Springboks’ failure to win the Rugby World Cup in England.

Initial media reports indicated that Meyer would remain in his position until the next World Cup in 2019, but more recently it was reported that he could face the axe.

Meyer’s fate will be decided at a SARU general council meeting in Cape Town on December 11.

The 29 members of SARU’s general council consist of provincial union presidents and CEOs, as well as SARU president Oregan Hoskins.

According to Afrikaans Sunday newspaper, Rapport, the country’s northern and southern unions are in disagreement about whether Meyer should stay on as Bok coach.

The "general feeling" is that Meyer should be axed, but the northern and southern unions appear to be in disagreement, with the majority of the southern unions wanting Meyer out.

Should Meyer lose his job, former Stormers coach Allister Coetzee appears to be the favourite to replace him.

This comes after local bookmakers, Sportingbet.co.za, recently suspended betting on the next Springbok coach.

Coetzee, a former Springbok assistant coach, was initially backed at 8/1 but odds on him were constantly cut to 6/1, 5/1, 3/1 and finally 9/4. 

After a flurry of bets, betting was suspended last week.

Coetzee currently coaches Japanese outfit, the Kobe Steel Kobelco Steelers, but reportedly has an exit clause in his contract for a high-profile job.

Other names that also featured prominently on the bookmakers’ list are former All Blacks coach John Mitchell and ex-Sharks mentor John Plumtree. Both of them are also linked to the vacant Stormers coaching job.

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