Cape Town - South African Rugby Union (SARU) CEO Jurie Roux on Tuesday said quotas only exist in the Vodacom and Community Cup tournaments and that there were no plans to enforce it at higher levels.
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Roux was speaking at a media briefing in Cape Town outlining SARU’s Strategic Transformation Plan for the next five years.
A media report late last year first exposed SARU’s plans for rapid transformation. The report stated that SARU wanted the Springbok team to be made up of 50% black players by 2019.
Roux on Tuesday insisted that it was never about setting specific quotas, and having 50% players of colour by 2019 was merely a target.
“There was never a quota. These are the targets that we are setting ourselves as a federation. It’s a collaborative process. This is where we want to get to,” said Roux.
He insisted that government did not set them the goal of having 50% black representation.
“We’ve all got to work together to get to that number and if we don’t get there, then we have only ourselves to blame. It’s not like somebody’s going to hold us responsible. We set the 50 (target), nobody else.”
Roux did admit that the 50% target by 2019 would apply to Super Rugby, Currie Cup as well as the national team, but emphasised that is was merely a target, not a specific quota.
Roux said the country’s provincial unions all back the plans and will play their part in developing more black players.
While the target is to have 50% players of colour in teams, Roux admitted that getting more ethnic black players would be a priority.
“We are obviously chasing black African players a lot more because we’ve got a massive base of (coloured) players, especially in the Western Cape, that has come through in any case.
“The Mecca of African black rugby sits in the Eastern Cape and we’ve got to get that organised to make sure that those players come through. And that’s why we’ve got three academies in that area. Because that’s the only way we can do that. And we’ve had success with it already. Hopefully some of them will play for the Kings next year and at different levels.”
The end goal is that by 2019, 60% of the players of colour would constitute black African players.