Cape Town – Former Springbok coach Jake White does not think SA Rugby’s new contracting model will reap rewards and has suggested the Springboks brand be sold to the highest bidder.
White shared his views via a column for the All Out Rugby website, responding to the announcement last week that SA Rugby will no longer directly contract Springboks and provincial unions agreeing to a cap on player budgets.
White wrote: “Under the new contracting model, SA Rugby is actively telling players to go overseas with no fear that it will affect their chances of playing for the Springboks.
“We’re going to call Regulation 9 whenever the Test window opens while we’re blooding juniors in South Africa on longer term contracts. It’s contradictory because all of the values we’re going to be trying to instil in those youngsters don’t apply to the more senior players we’ve told to chase big contracts overseas.”
In a rather radical suggestion, White said SA Rugby as a whole should be put on sale to the highest bidder.
“If you were listing rugby on the stock exchange, SA Rugby would be a blue-chip stock – we’ve got stadiums, hosted World Cups, won two Rugby World Cups and have the world’s best rugby schools producing elite players.
“There are plenty of wealthy businessmen interested in owning a professional sports club. A billionaire Qatari may recognise this as the chance of a lifetime to become the first person to own South African rugby, and maybe that would be a solution that eliminates all the interfering and corruption in our game.
“Moving SA Rugby to a tax haven like Dubai would save even more money and put the headquarters in a centralised location, perfect for assembling all our foreign-based players and roughly halfway between Tests in Cape Town and Sydney, or Johannesburg and London.”