Cape Town - Former Springbok Sevens captain Mpho Mbiyozo has
been appointed to assist Stanley Raubenheimer at the new Boland Rugby
Institute, which from this season will be based in Riebeek West.
Apart from Mbiyozo, who captained South Africa at the Sevens
World Cup in 2009, Raubenheimer will be assisted by Andras Molnar, while Barry
McDonald will be the institute’s manager and Alan Zondagh its performance director.
The new rugby academy aims to give more black players the
opportunity to develop their talents and will be operated by a non-profit
company, Transforming Rugby NPC, in association with South African investment
group Remgro’s 100% subsidiary, Stellenbosch Academy of Sport (SAS).
“The decision by SAS to fund an institute in the Boland was
timeous and will allow the continuation of the good work that was done by the
SA Rugby Academy in a new guise,” said Jurie Roux, CEO of SA Rugby.
“SA Rugby will be supporting a number of players at the new
Boland Rugby Institute, under our new funding model, as well as at other
provinces. I am sure that the new institute will make an important contribution
to rugby transformation.”
SAS chairperson, Faffa Knoetze, commented: “We want to make
a contribution to transformation in rugby and considered a number of options.
We particularly liked the idea of a rugby academy under Alan Zondagh’s
leadership and the impact that it can have on the development of black rugby
players over years to come.
“The fact that Alan’s Rugby Performance Centre in Riebeek
West already provided a ready-made facility in the Boland allied to the wealth
of talent in the region and Boland Rugby’s enthusiastic support for the
initiative, allowed us to quickly conclude that this was the way to go.
“We worked closely with the Boland Rugby Union and SA Rugby
in our planning and they, as well as SuperSport, will be providing financial
support and other expertise to the project.”
Boland Rugby Union President, Ivan Pekeur, also commented:
“We are entering exciting times at the Boland Rugby Union. With the assistance
of SAS and Alan Zondagh, the clear vision in terms of player development, world
class facilities in Riebeek West, top quality coaching, as well as the
structures that are being put in place, we cannot help but be excited for the
season that lies ahead.”
The academy will be known as the Boland Rugby Institute and
the players will be in contention for selection to Boland’s teams in SA Rugby
competitions. It has an intake of 29 Under-20 players in 2016, of which 23 are
The institute will also run squads in the Boland region from
Under-16 upwards to identify talent to be nurtured and absorbed into the
Institute in subsequent years.
*The Boland Rugby Institute has completed recruitment to its
first year intake but those interested in joining the institute in future can
contact Alan Zondagh on 022 461 2400.