After the Springbok monumental loss to New Zealand last weekend, there has been a wave of backlash from local rugby media and international rugby media alike. Though it comes as no surprise one has to question, firstly the agenda of the local and international media in particular, the Media from New Zealand and secondly the racial undertones which seek to advance racial discourse in South African rugby without regard or consideration of the actual facts at hand. Let take a look at the Bok coaching line up…
Allister Coetzee Bok Coach
New Zealand media assert that South African supporters are petitioning for the removal of Allister Coetzee and Mzwandile Stick as their inclusion into the system was largely based on the quota system. It goes on to read that the selection of both was racially biased and that the best candidates were not selected, thus the call to replace Coetzee and Stick justifiable.
There are glaring omissions to the reasoning behind the petition which points towards perhaps a misguided and biased view on the matter which lead to the question, why report on it in the first place and why advance the racial discourse?
The simple facts as pointed out on the Robert Marawa show which airs Tuesdays called #RoomDividers, by Kaunda Ntunja are as follows; Amongst the applicants for Coetzee’s job, he was the most qualified having accolades surpassing all his the other counterparts that were under consideration at the time. For an example he has won the world cup as an assistant coach and won the Rugby championship as assistant coach to Jake White. He won the Currie Cup on several occasion with Western Province.
It is common knowledge that Coetzee’s appointment was delayed by SARU which would have made the task of putting together a competitive Springbok team even more difficult. Most concerning is that by all indication Coetzee’s assistant coaches weren’t chosen by him but rather by SARU. Talk about throwing a man into the deep end! It has always been clear that he was dealt an impossible hand and was unlikely to win the rugby championship let alone beat the might All Blacks.
So then how have the media come to the conclusion that he was a quota and picked purely on racial grounds? Who are these coaches that should have gotten the job and on what basis are they coming to the conclusion? Beats us…
Mzwandile Stick, Johan Van Graan and Chean Roux, Bok Assistant coaches
Mzwandile Stick has been singled out for being inexperienced and out of depth and touch with the Springbok coaching job by many media entities both locally and internationally. At the outset one must acknowledge that yes it is true that Stick is by all means inexperienced and thus we can set that debate aside. This of course leads us to our next question; Why is Stick being singled out amongst the rest of the inexperienced Bok assistant coaching line-up?
For instance let us take Van Graan who is the current coach for the Bok attack and forwards. Van Graans biggest claim to fame is that he is the son of current Blue Bulls CEO Barend Van Graan. We couldn’t find info of his resume on either Wikipedia or Linkedin. Go ahead google him and tell us what you find and then google Mzwandile Stick. According to our sources he was part of the Springbok staff in RWC2015 in which we suffered our most humiliating loss to date against Japan under Meyer as allegedly a statistician or numbers guy or whatever. Huge jump to being the assistant coach at Test level.
Let us also look at Chean Roux who is the Bok defence coach and is allegedly related to SARU CEO Jourie Roux. Chean Roux was the head coach at Stellenbosch when Jourie Roux was Head of Sports at the time when there were alleged financial irregularities at the institutions. Click on the link below for more on the story:
Chean Roux by all indication and put simply has a bigger social media resume then he does one on the field of play. Go ahead google it first thing that comes up is twitter. By all indication he jumped from Varsity Cup into test match rugby which is unheard of.
Then this begs the question, why is no mention made of either Roux or Van Graan when the chickens come home to roost. Only Stick and Coetzee get the proverbial stick from all media and once again transformation is blamed for SARU administration short falls. When will the local media actually speak up? The New Zealand media clearly don’t know what is happening on the ground and must just put a foot in it!
We haven’t even gone into performance and delivery yet as that’s a whole other discussion, and at face value the make up of the Bok coaching line up leaves a lot to be desired and needs to be changed as it was a recipe for disaster at the outset and this is a fact that has become evidently clear with hindsight.
Mncedi Mabona for Grit Sports