SA Rugby president Mark Alexander says they are working actively with government to finalise plans for a domestic alternative to Vodacom Super Rugby.
The governing body this week announced that there were plans underway to host a domestic tournament as it looks unlikely that the 2020 Super Rugby season will be able to resume.
The tournament would include the four Super Rugby franchises and the two South African teams from the Pro14 – the Kings and Cheetahs – and would according to SA Rugby take place between July and August.
However, following the latest address from South African President Cyril Ramaphosa and minister of cooperative governance and traditional affairs Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, organised sport and training remains banned.
As coaches have admitted that players would need at least four weeks to get fully match fit and recondition for full contact, it looks unlikely that the tournament could take place as planned.
In an interview with Sport24, Alexander said that SA Rugby was continuing negotiations with government to find a solution that would allow the tournament to take place. He said that SA Rugby would hold the tournament behind closed doors and facilitate the screening of everyone involved.
‘Professional sport is being hard hit by this and it could cost us hundreds of millions of rands,’ Alexander said. ‘We want to come up with a proposal that we present to government that has all the necessary controls in place.
‘The difference between rugby and the other sports in South Africa is that our regional leagues are played internationally – in Europe and Australasia,’ he added.
‘The PSL is near the end of their league and cricket has just completed its season, but we are just starting out. It will cost us hundreds of millions. As long as we can give content to our sponsors and broadcasters … it’s important that we get some relief.’
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