I was dismayed when a a close friend of mine said that he would like to see Heyneke Meyer continue as coach of the Springboks. I met my friend for a sunday roast and during general conversation inevitably the subject of Springbok rugby came up.
I consider my friend to be an intelligent man and I know him well enough to know that he has fervently supported the Springboks for many years but I continually ask myself the question why are other people not seeing what I’m seeing?
This week two big sponsors, ABSA and BMW, decided to not continue sponsoring the Springboks. Why????? In my opinion if you are trying to promote your product then you would want your product to be associated with a winning brand, something new or cutting edge, something spectacular, exciting, entertaining, modern, high quality. Springbok rugby is not delivering this and spectatorship in South Africa is falling.
It is business. No one is trying to be nasty or insult anyone else. It just comes down to money. If we can’t make money from this venture then we pull out and that is what has happened with these sponsors.
I was certain until this week that SARU were going to announce that HM would be coach for a further term.My dread has been replaced with an even worse dread. Some reports have come out suggesting that Allister Coetzee could be in line for the position.
HM may be a really nice bloke and he may be very passionate about Springbok rugby but so are many Springbok rugby fans, this doesn’t qualify you to coach the Springboks. He proved over and over again his aversion to the modern game and fell back on Domkrag rugby. He has not moved the game forward and has little understanding on how to develop a squad. His ideas are so outdated that it’s surprising the Springboks did as well as they did do in the 2015 RWC.
More worrying is that SARU might reappoint him or might appoint Allister Coetzee in his place. This shows how outdated SARU are. We need new ideas, when I say new ideas I mean someone who understands modern rugby.
Well coached teams was the theme of the 2015 RWC. Smaller teams did a lot better than expected because of good coaching. All nations are looking for someone who can do the job. Except SA they are living in a bygone era where if you can charm the hell out of your potential employer then you get the job.
Emotion needs to be removed from decisions reagarding the appointment of a Springbok coach. HM is a nice guy, so what! AC has a dark skin, so what! These cannot be reasons to appoint a Springbok coach.
Anyone who is a rugby fan, I want to ask you a few questions:
- Is South African rugby in good health?
- Is South Africa playing to their full potential?
- Are we really not capable of passing and running with the ball?
- How come sides that embrace the modern game improve so quickly? Argentina and Japan are examples.
- Should we really not even try to learn the modern game?
- Should we just stick with Domkrag rugby?
- Are the Lions on the right track with Johan Ackermann?
I purposely never captioned the pictures I included above. These coaches are coaches who coach modern rugby.
- John Mitchell
- Johan Ackermann
- Joe Schmidt
- Michael Cheika
- Vern Cotter
- Steve Hansen
There are a few others