Stonehouse vents at SARU

2011-10-17 13:01

Cape Town - In the wake of the Pumas 43-18 loss to Western Province at Newlands, Pumas’ coach, Jimmy Stonehouse has blasted SARU for it’s decision to trim the Currie Cup to six teams.

After their encounter with their more illustrious opponents, Stonehouse  hit out at match officials for their alleged treatment of certain players and incidents.

“The scored does not reflect the real story. How can we dominate the scrums (which was actually the case) and at the same time be penalised 13 times in the scrum.

“And why was Schalk Burger not penalised for tackling one of my players without using his arms?

“There were an awful amount of those sort of decisions made by the referee (Pro Legoete) which went against us. You know, you do everything in your powers to play good, honest rugby.

“But it is as if dubious decisions always go against the smaller unions. It makes a person fed up,” Stonehouse told Monday’s Die Burger.

Stonehouse went onto say that the way smaller unions are treated does not start or stop at the way their matches are officiated. He cites that prospective six-team Currie Cup next season is a decision which could stunt the growth and strength of rugby in South Africa, despite the Pumas rugby union board favouring the SARU initiative.

“It is killing rugby, man. We qualify for the Premier division after working enormously hard and then after the raising of a few hands, we are told to go back to the First division.

“Sponsors approach you if you are in the Premier division. If we must be demoted  - not through our own doing – we will lose those sponsors.  I will have to let go of 13 of my 43 players.

“Then I haven’t even taken the other big ‘wolf’ into account: the bigger unions who buy our players

“How is that progressive for the sport of rugby as a whole?”

The Eastern Province Kings lost to the Boland Cavaliers in the final of the Currie Cup First division, a title the Pumas won in 2009, gaining promotion to the Premier division, where they have played since.

Stonehouse then proceeded to vent his frustrations at the probability of the Eastern Province, who are still in the First division, having a franchise in Super Rugby.

“How can you be groomed for Super Rugby if you can’t even win your own division?”

Stonehouse however, will not hold his breath for SARU to have a change of heart and allow the Pumas to stay in the Premier division.

“I believe that there is another meeting in November when the decision to have a six-team league will be discussed, but by that time you would have had to have played your playoff matches already and if we have to move down and lose our sponsors, it will certainly be SA Rugby’s responsibility to stand by us smaller unions financially.”


  • henniee.coetzee1 - 2011-10-17 13:56

    Jimmy, sadly money talks, and the big Unions have all the cash. SARU is as inept as you'd expect from something being politically controlled in SA, and the way rugby is being handled is disgraceful. They bowed to the bladdy Aussies to expand the Super Rugby competition, and now we're sitting with so much rugby that even die hard fans are getting sick of it. Our rugby needs a total overhaul, from player salary structures to the way decisions are made.

  • nelius.vantonder - 2011-10-17 15:15

    To be honest, I really feel bad for the smaller unions - I am always a big supporter of the underdog and even more so for variety. I do not like it when only one or a couple of teams dominate a competition e.g. the Bulls, WP and Sharks always dominating the Currie Cup (this year is an exception), and teams such as the Crusaders and Bulls dominating Super Rugby in recent years. Losing a spot in the premier division is so critical because we have so much talent in South African Rugby - very few players have the patience to keep playing for the smaller unions and they grab the first oppertunity they get when an offer by a bigger union is made to them...and why not it seems that coaches and selectors are biased to teams and players that play Super Rugby, they have this sick and perverted ideology that only a player that is good enough to play in Super Rugby is GOOD enough for a Springbok jersey - how ridiculous! When the Boks were in their prime they had Springbok players from all over the country, from Boland, from EP from the Valke and these were the days before Super Rugby, and these were the day when when very few teams were able to beat us - because our players held the classic element of surprise, no one knew what our boys were going to dish up. Today you only have to watch one weekend of Super Rugby and you know exactly what is in the arsenal of teams like South Africa, Australia and New Zealand - don't get me wrong, I love Super Rugby, and I love the concept of it -

      nelius.vantonder - 2011-10-17 15:24

      - but I don't like what it is doing to South African rugby. I do have a solution to all 14 our Unions to benefit the greatest from rugby: we should remove ourselves from the Super Rugby Competition, play a 14 Union Currie Cup adopt the NFL Drafting systems that the Amercans use for their Amercan Football development and use the FNB Varsity Cup as our young player breeding grounds and have National Draft where teams pick the best 50 players from the Varsity Cup to play for their team in the Next season where the team that came last can pick first and vice versa - this way small unions ALWAYS benefit first from the best young talent in South Africa and keep them competitative and blood new future Boks - at the end of the season the final four teams face the top four teams from New Zealand's NPC Cup in a Super 8 competition - exclude the Aussies completely - I feel nothing for a nation that favours League Rugby over Union thus let the two strongest Union countries in the world play together this way our Currie Cup and NZ's NPC Cup still gets the thumbs up and the best four from those competitions get to face each other to test and develop stregnth further. This will sort out our competetiveness across all 14 unions in SA and still bring in the Money for the politcial perverts in SA Rugby while the Small Unions still get to express themeselves and be bolstered by the best young talnet SA has to offer to keep them competitative and keep the sposnors and money rolling in. :)

      Michael - 2011-10-17 15:58

      Geesh that has to be the longest paragraph I have EVER read @nelius. Consider writing comments that are shorter than the actual article. You might have valid points but I lost interest halfway through the 1st part :p

  • Bootman - 2011-10-17 17:02

    I think ol Jimmy is just having a bit of a whine.The happens in soccer all the time. If you get relegated, you lose sponsors and players. Thats the reality of it. It's up to you as a team to make the most of it and fight your way back to the top. The whole play-off senario is unfair imo. The bottom two teams should automatically be relegated and the top two teams in the first division should be promoted. Why have a play-off? By rights Griquas and the Bulls should go and play first division.

  • Franklyn - 2011-10-17 22:16

    Stonehouse is meant for bigger things himself,he has made the Pumas side one to be feared...he is being mentioned often and i see better things for the man as a to watch.

      Bootman - 2011-10-18 13:57

      Ya well no fine.....Maybe I should consider a career in coaching as well. My team need only win two games for the season and I will be destined for bigger things. Jimmy Stonehouse for Bok coach......hahahah Just goes to show hey. If you're white you're right.

      Bootman - 2011-10-18 13:59

      PS. The only side thaty fears the Pumas are the Leopards.

      jacques.ackermann - 2011-10-19 10:53

      @bootman take your racist remarks somewhere else buddy. stonehouse has done more with the limited resources of the pumas than AC does with a whole SB squad in the WP.

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