Hendrik Cronjé and Gerdie Karstens
Bok exodus after World Cup?
Bloemfontein - Top rugby players that continue their careers in South Africa cannot hope to earn the same money as the game's big earners in world rugby.
An exodus of South Africa’s leading players therefore appears to be inevitable after the World Cup in New Zealand. The tournament starts on 9 September.
According to figures released by the Daily Mail this week, players that play in South Africa earn less than half of what other players do at wealthy European clubs.
Sport24 understands that South Africa's most expensive players - among them centre Jaque Fourie, lock Victor Matfield and wing Bryan Habana - earn between R2,5-million and R3-million per year at their unions. That does not include win bonuses, other advantages and their Springbok contracts.
South Africa therefore needs to offer good Springbok contracts to keep their top players.
Contrast that with All Black flyhalf Dan Carter, who the Daily Mail claims will soon become the best paid player in world rugby.
Carter (29) has recently been offered about R45-million by Racing Metro's millionaire owner, Jacky Lorenzetti, to play for the French club for the next three years. And it appears to be enough to lure the flyhalf to Paris after the World Cup.
Lorenzetti has already managed to lure experienced players such as Springbok star Frans Steyn, French forwards Sebastien Chabal and Lionel Nallett, Argentina's Juan Martin Hernandez and Six Nations player of the year Andrea Massi (Italy).
At Racing Metro, Steyn is apparently earning more than double of what any Springbok in South Africa earns.
Top players such as scrumhalf Fourie du Preez, hooker Gary Botha, flank Francois Louw, lock Bakkies Botha, utility forward Danie Rossouw and prop Gurthrö Steenkamp have indicated that they will shortly head overseas.
Scrumhalf Sarel Pretorius has also received a huge offer from a French club.