Super Rugby's fight against Europe

2015-11-25 13:06
New Stormers captain Duane Vermeulen. (Gallo)

Cape Town - Nobody could argue that the southern hemisphere is not leading the way in world rugby - the semi-finalists at this year's World Cup putting any alternative argument swiftly to bed. 

But the northern hemisphere offers something that many of the southern hemisphere sides in Super Rugby can't match - big money.

It is a reality that is especially close to home for the South African franchises, but SANZAR CEO Andy Marinos says that despite the financial allure of playing in Europe and Japan, Super Rugby has enough going for it to keep attracting the best in the business. 

"It’s more down to the player’s aspirations and I think every player plays this game to represent his country and play for them at the highest level," Marinos said.

"The only way in which you can manage that is by more of a control coming out of the national unions in terms of retaining those players.

"South Africa is a unique market because of our weak currency ... because of the attractiveness of the Euro and the Yen and the Pound and it does make it increasingly difficult.

"What I do know, and I’m also putting my ex-players hat on, is if you want to be playing in the best competition in the world this is certainly what it is.

"If you want to be in the best condition and shape in order to play international rugby and really promote yourself on the international stage, well playing in the southern hemisphere competition structures is a pretty good place to start."

Super Rugby 2016 gets underway on the final weekend in February. 

Read more on:    sanzar  |  super rugby  |  andy marinos  |  rugby

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