Mitchell saga over 'this week'

2012-06-27 11:03

Johannesburg - The Golden Lions hope to have their investigation into the allegations surrounding coach John Mitchell wrapped up by the end of the week.

According to the SuperSport website, Mitchell is set to then be presented with a charge sheet of the allegations against him, whereby he can defend himself against said charges.

The Lions took the extraordinary decision to suspend Mitchell last Friday after a group of players complained about him to president Kevin de Klerk.

De Klerk suspended Mitchell pending the outcome of the investigation into the allegations, which is ostensibly about how Mitchell treated the players.

While no indication has been given just how serious the charges are, the Lions finally confirmed Mitchell’s suspension in a statement on Monday.

“The Golden Lions Rugby Union confirmed this morning that John Mitchell, head coach of the Lions team, has been suspended to provide the Union with the opportunity to investigate certain allegations,” the statement read.

“Lions president, Kevin de Klerk said, “we are fortunate to be in a position where we have two experienced assistant coaches (Johan Ackermann and Carlos Spencer) who are able to step in during this period”.

“Where necessary, and for the time being, Johan Ackermann (Lions forwards coach), in conjunction with the management team, will make the necessary team related and technical decisions.”

Mitchell said the matter was now in the hands of his attorneys and he would only respond through them when they believed the time was right.

Mitchell is known as a disciplinarian coach, but there were few complaints when the Lions won the Absa Currie Cup last year under his leadership.

De Klerk also told Talk Radio 702’s John Robbie on Monday that the complaints were not criminal of nature, but about how Mitchell handled players.

“Unfortunately we came into the possession of some allegations that were made about John Mitchell. I convened an urgent Board meeting and subsequently decided, due to the seriousness of the allegations, to suspend John Mitchell with immediate effect,” De Klerk told Radio 702.

“I wouldn't say it was criminal allegations but certain things around the handling of players and the business of the Lions as well.”

De Klerk said this was certainly not something the Lions had done on a whim.

“No ways would this be a knee jerk reaction. We understand players are emotional and people work hard, but there are limits as well. There are certain lines that don’t get crossed in every aspect of life,” De Klerk added.

He went on to say Mitchell would be presented the allegations at a hearing and would have an opportunity to answer them.

But De Klerk then went on trying to downplay Mitchell’s role in resurrecting the franchise from bottom of the Super Rugby to Currie Cup champions.

“There is a machine behind the whole operation that wins the league, it's not just one single person. We’re not playing it down, but in the team dynamic it is a machine that contributes. There are administrative and assistant staff, not to forget the players who are the shop window of the union.”


  • bob.mcmillen.564 - 2012-06-27 11:14

    Shame, did the bad kiwi shout at the players, naughty man.

      Neutedop - 2012-06-27 11:47

      Blue, if you had a 15% success record at work, do you think your boss would shout (or would you shout at your personal, if you are the boss?) And that personal earn R500 000 + per year.

      bob.mcmillen.564 - 2012-06-27 11:51

      No I don't, but then I am not a professional sportsman that needs to be pushed into giving 110% every game, I reckon the job of coach is not an easy task, if I look at Fergie the coach of Man Utd, much as I hate him he has been successful, he sure is hard as hell on his players, takes no prisoners and it's worked for him, I very much doubt if the nicely nicely approach to coaching will get you very far.

      harold.lloyd.520 - 2012-06-27 11:54

      Bob, Allister Coetzee, Heyneke Meyer and Frans Ludeke's players will disagree with you.

      bob.mcmillen.564 - 2012-06-27 12:22

      I hear what you say Harold, and yes I have to agree, some people, including I'm sure those you mentioned, have the ability to motivate and get the best out of others by their personality and presence alone, others, such as Mitchell, achieve the same by being aggressive and dominating, as I said not an easy job coaching, or leading.

      harold.lloyd.520 - 2012-06-27 12:27

      Bob, from what we've read so far, we can gather that he wasn't just strict but he also made personal, insulting comments as well. That's not on, under any circumstances.

  • victor.freeman.39 - 2012-06-27 11:35

    "There is a machine behind the whole operation that wins the league, it's not just one single person." Interesting. Why is 1 person (the coach) fired when the operation FAILS to perform adequately?

      charlesdumbwin.dumbwin - 2012-06-27 11:38

      And that's exactly why this union will lose their franchise license to the Kings. Lions have had 16 years now in Super Rugby, and are still useless. Give Kings 16 years to develop and you'll see what they can do!!!

  • Chriskoi1 - 2012-06-27 11:43

    Ons het dit ook in die army gekry dat van die seuns wat sag groot gemaak was by die huis en dan is dit hulle wat altyd huil en na hul mammies toe hardloop maar op die einde dan is hulle waare Manne .So ek verstaan dit nie in die ARMY is ons maar R10 per dag betaal en dit manne kry nou so baie en hulle huil oor die behandeling .Kyk jaag die hele lot weg en begin met nuwe jong spelers.

      cape.maori - 2012-06-27 11:50

      Why do you call it an army? Was not an army. Rather call it different units of death squads killing people of colour!

      riaan.herselman.7 - 2012-06-27 12:21

      cape.maori - we talk rugby , I think you are lost . Political comments to be made on other pages . Pls keep your political views to yourself.

      cape.maori - 2012-06-27 12:24

      @Riaan - since when are you the headboy?

      cape.maori - 2012-06-27 12:34

      @Blue'tjie - that means nothing!

      cape.maori - 2012-06-27 12:47

      @Blue'tjie - please refrain from discussing politics on a sport site! Please man, stick to the editorial policy at Sport 24.

      harold.lloyd.520 - 2012-06-27 12:53

      Ok Cape, so no more comments about a white Bok coach not selecting enough coloured players. Please spread the memo to the rest of the Mitchells Plain Maori brigade.

      cape.maori - 2012-06-27 13:03

      @H - that's not politics - it's the truth!

      harold.lloyd.520 - 2012-06-27 13:07

      Cape, it was actually terrorists terrorising our borders. Too bad they were all black. I took plessure in every magazine I emptied.

      christopher.collings.9 - 2012-06-27 19:55

      Shame cape clown has a chip on his shoulder hahahahahaha poor boy

      christopher.collings.9 - 2012-06-27 20:25

      This goes 2 the colored idiot that thinks he's a maori, tell me why u hide behind a fake alias? Are u scared of showing ur face? U come across that way. Lekker bang ne are u afraid of what ppl might say about u. Listen pal grow a pair of balls & come back when u have learned 2 be a man. U hate the Springboks for 1 reason & thats out of spite towards white South Africans, give it up the secret is long out. Get rid of the chip on ur shoulder, stop hiding like a little boy & man up. Easy 2 have a big mouth when u hiding behind a fake screen name.

      bryan.torien - 2012-06-29 09:18

      Cape Maori - As an All Blacks Supporter, and someone who has been to Aotearoa often, I have to say it's often offensive to read your comments while attached to the silver fern logo you so proudly use - please note that is a TM Copyrighted image. Secondly, the maori people are a deeply spiritual people who learn to forget and forgive the ills of the past while trying to move forward. They still cling dearly to the Tanga te Whenua and do not resort to what is essentially hate speech the way you do! Now it's fine for you to have your views, but please don't air them while painting the rest of us who identify very deeply one with our own Whanu's now making their home in and amongst the Maori people in Aotearoa, and two with the Maori people there too. Very disappointing to see you purport these views as someone or something you're not and understand nothing about! To my fellow South Africans, not all All Blacks Supporters share the views of some, and some of us actually love you all tremendously! To All Blacks supporters who support them for their Brand and not out of hatred KIA KAHA

  • talita.vandermerwe - 2012-06-27 11:44

    One word "SLAPGATTE!"

  • cape.maori - 2012-06-27 11:48

    "He went on to say Mitchell would be presented the allegations at a hearing and would have an opportunity to answer them". So JM still does not know what the allegations are other then some vague statement about player complaints. Did JM get a chance to respond to the allegations before the decision to suspend? Ever heard about audi alterem partem? It seems that the disciplinary hearing is set down already? Sounds like a fait accompli!

      frank.mason.735 - 2012-06-27 12:00

      why do all most cape coloureds think they are maori? moron

      cape.maori - 2012-06-27 12:01

      @Frank - why do you still breath?

      cape.maori - 2012-06-27 12:06

      @Blue'tjie- you miss the point! Are you suggesting that JM's lack of respect in NZ is sufficient to suspend him in Johannesburg? Hahahahahahaha, the level of intellectual capacity you'll find in Danville! Oormekaar gepaar!

      harold.lloyd.520 - 2012-06-27 12:06

      They think being brown makes them Maori automatically.

      cape.maori - 2012-06-27 12:07

      @Harold - hahahhahaha - that was funny, old sonny!

      jan.carstens.940 - 2012-06-27 12:14

      You clearly do not understand the disciplinary code for employees.

      cape.maori - 2012-06-27 12:17

      @Blue'tjie - how can you make a statement when you do not know what the exact allegations are? Did you draft the letter of suspension? Thought so. Everyone is speculating and that does not take the matter further. Fact. Finish en klaar!

      cape.maori - 2012-06-27 12:18

      @Jan - please enlighten me as to the disciplinary code. Asseblief oom.

      bob.mcmillen.564 - 2012-06-27 12:29

      Blue, perhaps Cape Maori is actually a Maori that now lives in the Cape.

      lionel.kemm.9 - 2012-06-27 12:43

      A Maori that can speak and understand Afrikaans,now Ive heard it all hahahaa

      cape.maori - 2012-06-27 12:46

      @L Kerm - hahahhahaha - that must be hilarious!

  • Riaan - 2012-06-27 12:15

    Did the lions players really think the coach ( any coach ) is going to stay nice to them ? how about winning one , and not so long ago Mitchell was a send from heaven anybody remeber the currie cup ?

      blousteblou.meyer - 2012-06-27 14:43

      Riaan, I suppose you also backed Rudolph Streauli all the way, and thought that it was only softies complaining about Kamp Staaldraad and that it must become the rule in training?

  • francie.potgieter - 2012-06-27 12:15

    The lion players are a lot of sissies can't take a bit of criticism.

  • glynn.deklerk - 2012-06-27 12:44

    Lions players, please just suck it in and get on with your job.

  • raeez.omar.5 - 2012-06-27 13:47

    How the game has changed. "Rugby players are emotional". Next best thing players dive on the Rugby pitch to get opposition players sent off #LIKESOCCERPLAYERS

      harold.lloyd.520 - 2012-06-27 13:51

      Bryan Habana does that from time to time.

  • steveroodt - 2012-06-27 15:26

    As they say a bad worker always blames his tools these players should get off the bottle and man up they are at the bottom of the log.Yes the coach has some blame but at the end of the day they are the players and to be quite honest none of them have stood up even with the kings on their heels for the super 15 spot. Are these complaints being made so these players can get out of their contracts as they now know Vodacom here we come . Just a thought

      sean.brady.14224 - 2012-06-27 20:11

      There will be an escape clause should the Lions not be permitted to play Super Rugby. The Lions Super Rugby contract apparently expires at the end of 2012. I'd think the players would as well. SARU may end up paying some of the players out to prevent mass lawsuits all over the place. The next few weeks are going to be interesting in SA rugby!

  • james.s.bishop.7 - 2012-06-27 18:38

    You guys are wrong, by no means in ethical business practice is one allowed to ABUSE and/or HUMILIATE any employee whether it be a rugby player or grounds cleaner. In more ways than one John Mitchell reminds me of a man they used to call Mr Jobs not too long ago. WELL DONE players for sticking up for yourselves!

  • Francois - 2012-06-27 22:03

    what a circus

  • springbokke - 2012-06-28 05:49

    And when all is said and done ....welcome back Super rugby this weekend.........Bulle.

  • djkris.entrtainment - 2012-06-28 09:30

    look at this a bunch of rugby players complaining about their treatment when they don''t even perform on the rugby field...goodness this a girl team where they have to complain that they were shouted at for their rubbish performance in the super 15 so far... i mean if i was the coach... i would be throwing chairs at those useless lions players.... poor performance on the field to say the least... now they want to be treated like fairies...... goodness gracious me.... ifthey were perhaps winning, then it would not anger the coach so much..... its a real disgrace that rugby players who get mauled on the rugby field should complain about how their coach treats them.... did they want the coach to say " hey great job on the field guys... please can we try to do better..."..... The Lions performance on the field is embaressing to say the least and now their complaints about treatment from a coach is an icing on the cake.... what a bunch of cry babies...!!!

  • Jody - 2012-06-28 09:46

    Kevin yuo have just lost a potential sponsor for your union. team is slowly sinking down the sewers that surround Ellis Park.

  • Jody - 2012-06-28 09:50

    F or those who do not know Mitch will be Blues coach if he can get out of Lions contract. Should suit Lions as they need to cut cost as the will not be playing Super rugby next year. Ackerman great guy but clueless in coaching.Carlos will follow Mitch as the both have interest in Auckland.

  • susan.s.gordon.50 - 2012-06-29 09:24

    basically south africa doesnt like coaches who are different and firm look what happend to peter de villiers and the new coach has all peter de villiers players irony harden up discipline is vital unless players can go and play other games i support John Mitchel he is a frim coach and straight up !

  • pages:
  • 1