The Three Cheers Campaign
There is a move to bring back the custom of calling for three cheers for the referee at the end of matches.
For years and years in the Western Province it was the norm at club matches and school matches for each captain to call for three cheers for their opponents and then for the home captain to call for Three Cheers for the Ref. There is a move to bring back the custom.
That faded away and, sadly, referee abuse, unfortunately, all-too-frequent occurrence. The age of professionalism, and winning at all costs, seems to have coincided with the loss of sportsmanship at schools and clubs, with altercations between the losing team and referees or spectators almost the norm.
The purpose of the Three Cheers campaign is to reverse this trend by re-introducing the quality of sportsmanship to rugby. It is the intention that at the conclusion of every school and club game played in South Africa, both teams shout out Three Cheers for the Ref or Drie Hoera’s vir die Skeidsregter and proceed to cheer together.
This positive action by both teams and their coaching and management staff will start to engender a greater sense of sportsmanship among everyone around the field – including parents or spectators who may feel aggrieved at the final result.
The SA Schools’ Rugby Association has unanimously endorsed the campaign and authorised for the provincial structures to be used in spreading the message.
What are the objectives?
• To encourage a positive post-game attitude among players towards the referee
• To use the image of both teams cheering the referee as a positive influence for spectators to follow suit
• To create a greater sense of camaraderie between players and match officials
• To change players’ and spectators’ negative attitudes towards referees
What do you have to do?
• At the end of the game both teams and coaching staff come together in a large circle in the middle of the field
• The home team captain thanks the visitors for the game
• The visiting team captain thanks the home team
• Both captains then shout Three Cheers for the Ref, followed by all players and coaches hip-hip-hooray, hip-hip-hooray, hip-hip-hooray