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Tuesday, December 06, 2005


Minnow Murder

I am sure most of you have read the latest SA Rugby magazine. One article was extremely interesting to me, Minnow Masacre.

Since the SEC franchise and the unions in that region has been under discussion lately, I thought it would be interesting to post some of the facts regarding the differences between our traditional big unions and the minnows.

For me, it just shows how inept rugby administration in this country is, and how you can only respect some of these unions and their dedicated coaching staff.

Number of times a smaller union was trounced by one of the big 5


Number of giant killings in the 2005 Currie Cup

1 (Boland vs WP)

Number of players contracted by the Blue Bulls


Number of players contracted by Border Bulldogs


Sharks player budget for 2005

R 30 000 000.00

Griffons Player Budget for 2005

R 2 000 000.00

What the top player at the Sharks earns a month

R 125 000.00

What the top player at the Griffons earns a month

R 15 000.00

Worst paid Shark player earns

R 8500.00

Worst paid Griffons player earns

R 3000.00

The match fees the Bulls willpay out in the Super 14 2006

R 972 000.00

The amount of match fees the Griquas will pay out in 2006

R 0

The money the Bulls will pay 30 players in the Super 14 2006 excluding bonusses and incentives

R 7 291 667.00

Harry Pienaar (Griffons coach) on resources available to unions

"The big unions like the Bulls have these analysis systems worth R 950 000.00. We just cannot match that. Our video analysis technology consists of me sitting on a Sunday afternoon with a video of the game and two TV's. It takes nine hours, and I manually copy the sections of the game I want to highlight onto another video."

Kobus van der Merwe on how rugby in the Cape and Kimberly differs

"An eye-opener for me was how much the guys have on their plates here. They are very secluded from what happens at a semi-amateurish union. The amount of all the kit these guys receive, all the extra benefits are amazing. Guys have supplement sponsors here, at Griquas they had to go to the pharmacy to buy their own."


If a WP player is out for a year through injury, the union will pay his salary for six months after the injury. After that, the contract insurer kicks in.

If a Griquas player is in the same situation, he is paid for two months only.

Fruit Juices, milk and yoghurts are delivered every Monday to the door of a WP player. Griquas players get the Volksblad.

It is quite shocking to see the difference. And this is porbably why you have to respect a union like Boland for kicking WP's asses earlier this year even more.

Source: SA Rugby Magazine December 2005 issue

Someone should give SWD half the Sharks budget and we'll kick even the Bulls' asses!!!!
What I can't understand is that the salaries still makes out the biggest percentage of teh guy's income. Surely match fees should make out the bigger part with some decent coverage should the guy get injured.  

i cannot understand the way rugby is administrated in our country, from clubs straight through to the national setup.


aint that the bloody truth
Wow, I never realised it was that bad.

PA, Kandas

Do you know if players get individual sponsorship at the smaller provinces?

I've noticed that at most smaller UK clubs the players are sponsored by a small local business or a branch of a large business etc.

I know that Telkom is ridiculously expensive in SA and the take-up of internet services is flattening out but I do wish all the provinces would get their own dedicated website on which they could 'sell' themselves and their players.

PA, the figures you quote just serve to show how much harder, and smarter, the small unions need to be. They need to be innovative and enthusiastic in finding ways to raise funds.

Geez, it sure bugs the hell out of me that Van Rooyen can authorise spending R150k on a single lunch when the worst paid Griffons players are earning R36k a year! That little lunch could have kept 4 and a bit players for a whole year.

It's disgraceful. How come we have heard nothing further on the whole lunch affair? As far as I know it was to be included in the investigations because the numbers simply didn't add up apparently.

it is absolutely shocking and makes you wonder how the hell these guys manage to compete at all.

hell a lions or WP 4th team should hammer these okes!

the less said about bvr the better.
Please tell me how difficult is it to see the workability of the following.

Give the guy a decent salary that will enable him to provide in his basic needs and let him live comfortably without getting anymore.

Then determine match fees that can be linked to performance, team and individual. Evaluate the performances on a monthly or fortnightly basis and pay teh player his dues.

Make sure that the player has income protection while injured. For instance take Schalla. Under normal circumstances you would pick him for most of the games. Thus should he get injured he still receives his match fees based on teh teams performance.

This will also get the guys to go back to getting a backup plan ie studying, for when his career is over.

I am not a doomsdayer, but let me tell you, one day we are going to sit with a lot of ex players that will be bankrupt and with no means of income, because they did not know how to act professionally with their money and the administrators did nothing to assist them, ie business courses, etc.
Donner, the Australian Rugby Union has a whole department dedicated to ensuring their players develop themselves outside rugby.

They also bend over backwards to encourage them to study and try and be flexible.

The numb nuts within SARU don't have a clue.

Why are South African rugby paying R6.5m pa to finance the President's Council????

Can't someone link us to SARU, so they can see what we think of them!!

Start a thread with all your concerns re SARU and your ideas on player contracts, etc. and I can almost guarentee you the thread will be read by someone at SA Rugby who will be able to do something about it.
Why is everyone so keen on beating the Bulls

Do you regard them as the primary opposition in SA Kandas?


It is a damning indictment on play in SA in general. The problem is that people like Vodacom and MTN and the Banks are interested ONLY in the marketing mileage they'll get out of a sposnsorship. My wife is responsible for this sort of thing at one of the corporates (that sponsors the Boks and Sharks) and she says the only thing the corporates want to know is what marketing mileage they're going to get out of it.

This is even so for Corporate Social Investment.

The Bottom line is:

"What's in it for us?"

That's why they rather sponsor a Bulls or WP.

These are high profile teams that get massive marketing coverage and have many fan followers so they get to advertise freely and make money out of supporting a winner.

Although the Sharks deal obviously hasn't paid of.....heheheh

Told her so...
my question. how can we fix it?

is it possible to fix this?

And obviously the high profile players even have their personal sponsorships, although this is more prevalent in games where individuals are more prolific, like Jacques kallis and Sanex

Didn't Joost VDW have a deal with Toyota at some point too?
Good question

And the unfortunate answer is never.

You cannot put up a system where the sponsors all contribute to a basket, beacuse they won't.

Let's say you're4 FNB and you want to be associated with a winner and you approach WP (this is just an example). There are reasons for this:

1. They're a top performing tea,
2. They have a NATIONAL fan base that is HUGE
3. They get top class NATIONAL exposure

Bottom line:

1. YOU get mileage because of the EXPOSURE

2. The team is often exposed to the media because of their top performances

3. The team will go to your company and associate themselves with it. (My wife's company had deals with the national skippers at one point where theese guys actually came to events and dressed up like the brand)

My solution would NOT be province specific, because corporate sponsors are going to sponsor whoever they want and you can't stop them.

The solution lies in the NATIONAL sponsoirships. The cash that SARU gets from the national team's sponsors. This cash can be divided and shared pro rata among the the unions, with the Smaller unions getting more and the bigger ones less or nothing (like the Bulls, Cheetahs and WP)

It would be the duty of the NATIONAL body to ensure the lower provinces are properly funded.

If the big brass (read BvR) at Saru wants to take away a big Union's Test status because they didn't vote for him, there is no guarentee he will give the smaller Unions money from one huge Sponsor!!!

You might also get a situation where a smaller Union like SWD will do everything possible to give their sponsor all the exposure they want and more. A real partnership. In every sense of the word.
But that's the issue Kandas

The votes from the Big 5 are more important than the other 9 votes.

I am absolutely certain that SWD will deliver on the kind of promises and coverage that a sponsor requires REGIONALLY

The problem is, and I really mean this with respect, they have a history of losing.

The Bulls and WP and to a lesser extent (sorry supporters) Sharks, FS and Lions also have a history of winning.

But just as important is the massive exposure sponsors get NATIONALLY.

With respect, and really with respect to SWD, because this is not easy.

Let's take the Discovery Health Expo in Pretoria every year when they sponsored it.

Who would draw the crowds?

Bryan Habana


Ishmael Dollie

Do you understand what I'm saying from the view of a sponsor.

I think that'll probably be your issue at the Spears too. A sponsor sees three teams that have never really become nationally high profile and he sees them uniting and all they say is what's in it for us that WP, Bulls, Cats, CU and Sharks don't offer us?

Sure your guys will bend over backwards to help them, but they SEE the existing fan base and support of WP, the Cats and Bulls and wonder, why should they reinvent the wheel and go for something shakey with no tested fan support base?

That is the major challenge you guys will be facing, I think.
Ja, maar op die ou end is jy ook afhanklik van blootstelling in die media - en hulle het die gewoonte om hulle by presterende spanne te skaar...
Die onus rus dus steeds op die span - soos wat niemand opgewonde kan raak oor die Griffons nie.

Oor borgskappe:
Hoekom verbeel ek my nou dat die Bulle 'n jaar of vier gelede R1 miljoen van die Lotto gekry het - terwyl bv. die Dierebeskermers (DBV - SPCA) niks kon kry nie?
Why the hell am I in HR and Law

I should be in communications...

I think I'll do my MBA in Communications instead of human capital management.

Jy's verkeerd. Dink jy nie The Herald gaan blootstelling gee aan hulle eie spanne nie?

Die media is net sulke 'mercenaries' as wat die borge is.

Hulle stel meer belang in wie gee vir HULLE die meeste geld as wat hulle belangstel in borgskappe. Nie die publieke media nie, maar die privaat media. Publieke media het 'n beleid dat hulle NIE blootstelling gee aan borge nie.

Kom ons gebruik Vodacom byvoorbeeld met die Bulle.

Die Bulle gaan outomaties baie blootstelling in die Pretoria News kry maar wat van ander koerante?

So, jy is Vodacom se kommunikasiebeampte (een van hulle). Dis maklik.

Jy kontak Primemedia en Naspers en vertel hulle:

"Kyk manne. Ons adverteer nogals baie in julle koerant / radio stasie so ons het bietjie meer exposure nodig buite die plek waar ons borg, so maak 'n plan hierso"

En dis presies wat gebeur. Ewe skielik lees ons oor hoe goed die Bulle is in The Star en Citizen ...

Dis ABSOLUT ALLES 'n geldmaak storie.

You've got reply mail.
Bliksem you're fast!  
Jy het 'n punt. Fair Lady se redakteur het bedank omdat sy deurgeloop het nadat sy openlik krities was oor 'n adverteerder se produk.
Maar koerante bereik 'n punt waar hulle nuus nie kan ignoreer nie, selfs al is daar nie advertensies betrokke nie. Mense wil lees oor wenspanne, en 'n span se beeld is sy grootste bemarker. SWD het groot blootstelling gekry hier rondom 1999.
Die Bokke kry baie meer blootstelling in koerante as wat hulle aan Sasol ads insamel. (Slegte vergelyking, want die Bokke is nuus of hulle goed of sleg vaar!)
Selfs The Herald gaan sukkel om baie positiefs te skryf oor die OP en Grens se rugby.
Jy kan nie perdedrolle opdres as vye nie...

You are still talking about the MAJOR nationals or multi-nationals.

I'm talking about the local small businessman.

Geez, South Africa is a rugby country, I know it's not the major sport or even the national sport but there are tens of thousands of small businesses out there owned by guys who love rugby.

Every effort should be made to get them involved.

So, you get a team sponsor e.g. Outeniqua Tjoe-Tjoe Eagles :-), then you aim to get smaller individual sponsors per player.

It works in the UK. On the website, the players profile either names his individual sponsor or provides his mobile number so potential sponsors can get in touch with him.
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