‘White old boys club rules rugby’

Cosatu has called on ministers and sport administrators to ensure that more black players represent the Springboks.

The trade union federation released a media statement, criticising the white 'old boys club' which it believes still rules rugby in South Africa.

This follows Saru president Oregan Hoskins' instruction to Bok coach Heyneke Meyer to pick more black players. He did so, selecting six players of colour in his match 23 for the Test against Scotland, including three black Africans.

'The old boys club in rugby still control things in the same way they always have and they manage their public relations to reinforce this,' Cosatu said. 'The coach is always presented as now fixing the problems that Peter de Villiers caused, to undermine the latter, yet we are bringing back old players when there are existing new ones around. The team on the field is still over-represented by white players, even though there are many great black players in the squad.

'Looking at the match [against Scotland] on Saturday, again black players are brought on to the field in the last five minutes, even though the Springboks are comfortably ahead. This is because the coach is scared that the black players will outshine the white players, if they get lots of game time. Even when players go off for injury, they are rushed back on because the black replacements may shine.'

Cosatu also took a dig at the camouflage scrum cap which Bok captain Victor Matfield wore, believing it resembles the old apartheid era.

'The arrogance of the white boys club continues to be displayed very publicly, an example being how Matfield wears an old South African riot squad skull cap, completely disregarding how this may impact on the sentiments of black South Africans. He should be told to wear a cap with new national symbols.'

Post by

Simon Borchardt