Samoa vs Scotland
Golden Lions vs Griquas

Off-the-ball crackdown in Currie Cup

Wed, 28 May 2014 14:46
Large andre watson speaks630

Provincial coaches and referees are united in their desire to ensure that negative play is eradicated from the Currie Cup this season.

Provincial coaches and referees were united in their desire to ensure that negative play is eradicated from the Currie Cup this season, following a workshop on Wednesday.

All 14 unions - represented by 12 head coaches and two assistant coaches - agreed on the key issues on which they would all be focusing this season to ensure that rugby’s oldest domestic championship lives up to its traditions.

"We talked about all the big ticket items such as the tackle, maul and scrums and what the law says, but one thing that came through very strongly was that we were all aligned in the desire to get rid of negative play," said Andre Watson, SARU General Manager of Referees.

"By that I mean the 'off-the-ball' stuff such as throwing the ball away, jersey pulling and something that has been a big concern in Super Rugby, obstruction at and around the breakdown. There was total buy-in from all parties on that approach to the extent that the coaches would like to see players being yellow carded for negative play.

"There are no new interpretations: it's very clear in law what the players have to do and what the referees have to do. We will simply be applying the laws," he added.  

The SARU initiative was welcomed by coaches.

"This is a very important workshop with the main aim of aligning referees and coaches on what we want to see on the field," said Allister Coetzee, coach of Western Province and the Stormers. "We haven't done anything like before and it's a great start.

"Obviously coaches have frustrations and referees have frustrations and we've been able to share them and agree on the type of picture that we'd like to see on the field so that we have a good product for the fans and the players.

"The main thing we want is a fair contest in all departments and not one that is decided by illegal play - that's cheating and we don't want it," he added.

Sharks coach Brad McLeod-Henderson said: "It's a great opportunity for referees and coaches to get a good understanding of how the laws should be blown. We know how the refs will see the game and understand the areas that we all believe there should be a clamp down on."

The Currie Cup qualifying tournament kicks off on June 7. The six bottom placed teams in last year's  First Division and the relegated Griquas will play a single-round competition on a log basis.  

The team that tops the log will join the Sharks, Western Province, Free State, Blue Bulls, Golden Lions, Pumas and EP Kings in the Premier Division which kicks off on August 8.

Samoa vs Scotland
sast: 15h30 | local: 17h30

  • 26 | 23
Golden Lions vs Griquas
sast: 16h00 | local: 18h00

  • 7 | 7
Sat, 10 October 2015
Australia v Wales 15h45 London
England v Uruguay 19h00 Manchester
Sun, 11 October 2015
Argentina v Namibia 11h00 Leicester
Italy v Romania 13h30 Exeter
France v Ireland 15h45 Cardiff
United States v Japan 19h00 Gloucester
Fri, 16 October 2015
Blue Bulls v Western Province 17h00 Pretoria
Connacht v Zebre 18h30 Sportsground
Glasgow Warriors v Dragons 18h35 Scotstoun
Scarlets v Leinster 18h35 Parc y Scarlets
Edinburgh v Ulster 18h45 BT Murrayfield
Sat, 10 October 2015
Free State Cheetahs v Sharks 34 | 34
Fri, 09 October 2015
New Zealand v Tonga 47 | 9
Western Province v EP Kings 45 | 14
Pumas v Blue Bulls 24 | 25
Wed, 07 October 2015
Namibia v Georgia 16 | 17
South Africa v United States 64 | 0
Tue, 06 October 2015
Fiji v Uruguay 47 | 15
Canada v Romania 15 | 17
Sun, 04 October 2015
Ireland v Italy 16 | 9
Argentina v Tonga 45 | 16
Zebre v Scarlets 8 | 20
Sat, 03 October 2015
England v Australia 13 | 33
Connacht v Cardiff Blues 36 | 31
South Africa v Scotland 34 | 16
Samoa v Japan 5 | 26
Team P W D L Pts
Golden Lions 9 9 0 0 43
Blue Bulls 10 8 0 2 39
Western Province 10 7 0 3 35
Free State Cheetahs 9 3 1 5 21
Sharks 9 4 0 5 19
Pumas 10 3 1 6 17
EP Kings 10 2 0 8 12
Griquas 9 1 0 8 8