The contractual cases involving Springboks Pieter-Steph du Toit and Malcolm Marx may not be cut and dried just yet, according to Sunday newspaper Rapport.
Both Du Toit and Marx were the centre of what was deemed South African rugby’s very first ‘deadline day’ as both players opted out of their respective franchise contracts in line with a 21-day salary reduction clause.
As part of that collective agreement on salary reductions, players were given a 21-day window – running from 24 April to 14 May – to cancel their current contracts and take up offers overseas if they wished.
As has been reported by SARugbymag.co.za, Du Toit’s intention was always to stay in South Africa and he eventually rescinded his contract cancellation and agreed to a deal that will keep him with the franchise until the end of the British & Irish Lions tour next year.
However, it’s understood that this action did allow him to start negotiating his next contract, which ultimately saw him also agree to change the terms of his image rights in a move said to have financial benefits
According to Sunday newspaper Rapport, there have now been fresh twists in the cases of both Du Toit and Marx.
Western Province have reportedly been given until Monday afternoon to prove to the South African Rugby Employers’ Organisation that they did not break the collective industry agreement by keeping the Springbok flank in South Africa.
If they find that Western Province breached the agreement by getting Du Toit to sign his next contract with an amendment, a dispute would be lodged and an arbitration case could be recommended.
The newspaper also reports that the Lions are seeking further clarity over whether Marx was within his rights to cancel his contract before it had come into effect. Marx’s year-long Lions contract was only set to come into effect from 1 June – but it was cancelled on 14 May as per the collective pay cut agreement.
The Springbok hooker was playing for the Shining Arcs in Japan and would have returned to play for the Lions if they had made the Vodacom Super Rugby playoffs – before the season was suspended due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
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