Rugby’s say in how schools are run just got a little bit bigger

Theo Garrun lifted the lid on a voice note in which a Bishops supporter mentions how some OD’s should group together to fund the acquisition of rugby players, essentially because it’s the best way to help the school’s rugby to recover and become more competitive.

To be honest it is nothing new to hear old boys discussing school rugby as if it’s a pro rugby setup. Nor is it new to come across those willing to inject money specifically for funding rugby boys arriving from other high schools. It has become part and parcel of the sport at school level now.

In fact the voice note is refreshing in a way. It is better than listening to old boys go on negatively like “Chicken Little: The Sky is Falling”  about the competence of the head coach and/or rugby head and sometimes other personnel during a difficult season – something that’s also very common and tends to get a bit unreasonable.

Where Theo might have missed the bigger story is on the matter surrounding the acquisition of a player in-season. A player who was at Rustenburg not too long ago, then at Glenwood as recently as a few weeks back and is now a brand new Bishops first team player.

Over the years, love it or hate it, we’ve all had to become accustomed to Grant Khomo shopping and the arrival of new faces in u16A teams during the third term. We’ve had to learn to live with the matric recruit who hooks up for just one year at his new school, all for the sake of rugby. We have seen the revival of the “post-matric” in its numerous forms from the more honourable practice of holding back boys to repeat Grade-11 to encouraging them not to sit for matric exams and redo matric the following year and finally the frowned upon option of offering them a sponsored place to return and redo Grade-12 even though they have matric certificates.

Some will try convince you that all this was for the benefit of the students but if you’ve been around SBR long enough, you know what the main underlying reason is no matter how it gets window-dressed. There’s a plethora of diverse narratives behind rugby boys’ school transfers, each offering unique insights into their motivations for the move. Yet, in their new schools, a singular storyline typically emerges, highlighting the primary motivation behind accepting enrolment and financially supporting the rugby boys.

So in 2024 are we witnessing the birth of the in-season transfer? A school sees that its rugby campaign is heading South and sets off on a recruitment drive to turn the ship around by introducing new players in critical positions of weakness during the second term. It’s an abrupt and risky quick-fix but when you have nothing to lose…? Resorting to it tells a story all on its own of the pressures that headmasters and school rugby staff are under to deliver favourable results.

Leave a Reply

233 Comments

  1. avatar
    #233 NealW

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #232)
    If Bishops’s decision is to stay in 1st division then they need to make teams play down more than 1 spot because these 100-nil scores do nobody any good. I really think teachers need to grow up and explain to their counterparts where their teams stand in terms of ability and to schedule games accordingly.

    ReplyReply
    21 May, 2024 at 15:03
  2. avatar
    #232 Running_Rugby1861

    :roll: @Trots HJS (Tandem) (Comment #231)
    How often does Boishaai have 1w open sides in action? Bishops should but never will have played your 10ths, 8ths 6ths, 4ths and so on

    ReplyReply
    20 May, 2024 at 17:08
  3. avatar
    #231 Trots HJS (Tandem)

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #230)
    I am really shocked to see how poor Bishops rugby now is. They could only offer Boishaai 13 games today and won no game and only scored 39 points over these 13 games. Boishaai scored more than 50 points in 10 of these games and Bishops scored “0” in 9 of the 13 games. I am obviously not a stakeholder in this prestigious school but my goodness the school who produced so many top rugby players surely deserve better. No reason can be good enough for such a terrible situation.

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 19:07
  4. avatar
    #230 Running_Rugby1861

    @Grasshopper (Comment #229)
    Bishops V Glenwood let’s go…

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 16:46
  5. avatar
    #229 Grasshopper

    Boishaai 73 Biskoppe 6, Eish!!!

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 14:56
  6. avatar
    #228 Roger

    @Vleis (Comment #221)
    Yup, got a few friends whose kids have gone to US universities on hockey, swimming and golf scholarships. It still costs them an arm and a leg in ZAR though – only one is a full scholarship which I believe covers 80% of the cost. My niece is a superstar swimmer (top ten in her age group in SA) and she will hopefully be going that route (if she sticks to it – the drop out stats for girls from age 14-18 are startling). Swimming is a very lonely sport – requires huge dedication, hours and training.

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 13:13
  7. avatar
    #227 Smallies

    @Vleis (Comment #226)
    TJ had a pass that I haven’t seen on a schoolboy scrummy for a very long time….

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 11:03
  8. avatar
    #226 Vleis

    @Smallies (Comment #225)
    Yes, he was indeed one of the scrummies. I think that the recruiters at Wits got a little bit excited that year as they knew that the two incumbent scrummies would probably be gone in a year (Ruan was retiring and Krappies had a contract with the Lions), so they recruited, inter alia, TJ plus the Border CW scrummie, the EP CW scrummie, the Lions AW scrummie, a Lions u19 scrummie, my son…and…the Mexican u20 scrummie! :lol: :lol:

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 10:57
  9. avatar
    #225 Smallies

    @Vleis (Comment #224)
    I suppose TJ van Rensburg was one of those scrummies , he later went on to Captain A-State,their current Captain is Evan Roode Boishaai 2018 they do have a good rugby program and regularly make the national finals

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 10:48
  10. avatar
    #224 Vleis

    @Smallies (Comment #222)
    Wow!
    .
    When my son joined Wits, there were more than eight good scrumhalves competing for the 1st team spot, including Krappies, who recently got a call up to the Springbok alignment camps. Anyway, eight into one does not work…so after a few months, two or three of the scrumhalves landed up at Arkansas State.

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 10:39
  11. avatar
    #223 Vleis

    @Smallies (Comment #214)
    Interesting – I didn’t know that about Green Bay.

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 10:31
  12. avatar
    #222 Smallies

    @Vleis (Comment #221)
    My son was offered a rugby scholarship at Arkansas state university witch covered 50% of costs ,I would still have been liable for about R 500k yearly🤣🤣🤣

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 10:30
  13. avatar
    #221 Vleis

    @Roger (Comment #220)
    Eish. The best course of action for a US university is to try to get a sports scholarship. Of course, this is not easy, but it’s much easier for a daughter than a son, as I’m told that the universities must offer an equal amount of sports scholarships for women as for men…and football alone offers 85 scholarships!
    .
    At least four of my daughter’s swimming competitors, from her age group, got scholarships to US universities after school. Indeed, one of her best friends is just completing her final year at Cal Berkeley on a swimming scholarship.

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 10:19
  14. avatar
    #220 Roger

    @Vleis (Comment #202)
    a good friend has just sent his daughter to UCLA – from the UK. She is absolutely loving it – at $80,000 per year – him not so much much! Especially as she was accepted to all the top UK universities, which would only have set him back £9,000 per year :mrgreen:

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 08:15
  15. avatar
    #219 Roger

    @OUD ANKER (Comment #211)
    KES have no jersey sponsor – the red jersey is still sacrosanct in that regard :wink:

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 08:12
  16. avatar
    #218 Smallies

    @OUD ANKER (Comment #217)
    Nee ek weet👍👍ek dink steeds hulle model sal die Cheetahs soos n handskoen pas

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 08:05
  17. avatar
    #217 OUD ANKER

    @Smallies (Comment #214)
    Ek trek jou been oor die Packers!! Ek weet maar alte goed wie hulle is en hoe goed hulle is…!

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 08:03
  18. avatar
    #216 OUD ANKER

    @Smallies (Comment #213)
    I suppose that is very true as well.

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 08:02
  19. avatar
    #215 Smallies

    @OUD ANKER (Comment #212)
    I bet there is a better QB in Cornwall🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 08:00
  20. avatar
    #214 Smallies

    @OUD ANKER (Comment #212)
    Packers is the only community owend franchise in the NFL…Greenbay are the Packers and the Packers are Greenbay ,its a concept that I’ve alway thought would suit the Cheetahs down to a tee….Both cities are about the same size and like Lambeau field the Freestae staduim is also the biggest buolding in the city….not to mention that it was the home of Vince Lombardi

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 07:59
  21. avatar
    #213 Smallies

    @OUD ANKER (Comment #211)
    To the sponser it’s important,no business will pour a million or more into a school if it doesn’t benefit…for them its all about exposure

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 07:53
  22. avatar
    #212 OUD ANKER

    @Smallies (Comment #205)
    The Patriots…ALWAYS!! (Tom Brady, am I allowed to use the term GOAT, Hopper might get upset)……who is the Packers again??😁😁

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 07:50
  23. avatar
    #211 OUD ANKER

    @Smallies (Comment #210)
    I hear what you say about sponsors, but I bet you apart from maybe @Oud Affie nobody ons this blog even knows (without googling it) who the sponsor on the Affie jersey is as an example, I for instance can’t think who is on the Grey jersey or Gim jersey or KES jersey or Waterkloof jersey, so how important is that 10000 crowd on the specific day then really?…and I’m not dissing the sponsor idea for one second, just wondering how important it really is..

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 07:46
  24. avatar
    #210 Smallies

    @RuggaFreak (Comment #209)
    Like I said nothing makes a sponser happier than 10 000 people next to the mainfield on Saterday afternoon

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 06:10
  25. avatar
    #209 RuggaFreak

    No event draws visitors and eyeballs in general to a school than a rugby reunion/derby game, so yes it matters whether we like it or not.

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 00:20
  26. avatar
    #208 Vleis

    @Smallies (Comment #205)
    I’m a 9’ers fan…but must admit that we were lucky to beat you in the playoff last year!

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 00:12
  27. avatar
    #207 Vleis

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #204)
    Thanks. Hmmm…KES to pip Westville away, St Alban’s to pip Clifton away, Affies to pip GCB at home, PG to pip PRG at home, Oakdale to beat the Kwaggas at home, SACS to end Milnerton’s run at home, Jeppe to beat PBHS away, Northwood to pip Glenwood at home, HJS to pip Biskoppe away, Garsies to klap MV away, Klofies to pip DIE Menlo away…and, most importantly, Northcliff to beat Bennies away!

    ReplyReply
    18 May, 2024 at 00:06
  28. avatar
    #206 Vleis

    @Smallies (Comment #203)
    Yebbo! Between 1975 and 2020, Michigan NEVER had less than 100,000 supporters at home- i.e. in 293 consecutive home games! 8-O Unfortunately, Covid ended that run…or it would have continued.

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 23:59
  29. avatar
    #205 Smallies

    @Smallies (Comment #203)
    He is also only a hop skip and jump away from Lambeau field ….HOME OF THE PACKERRRRRRRSSSSSSSS!!!!!

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 18:40
  30. avatar
    #204 Kaya 85

    @Vleis (Comment #201)
    Vleisie rather late than never … good insight. Your predictions?

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 18:20
  31. avatar
    #203 Smallies

    @Vleis (Comment #202)
    Yes but he gets to watch football in the big house

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 18:18
  32. avatar
    #202 Vleis

    Of course, a successful rugby program (esp. 1st team) will increase the number of top rugby recruits…but one factor that people are perhaps forgetting is that it significantly increases the recruits in general – e.g. Dean Laing told me that Jeppe’s applications for gr8 increased from 180 (can accommodate 200) in about 2009 to 1,000 (I think) in 2013…and, on this blog, I read that after Garsies lost by 100 v Kloof, the number of boys in the school dropped to 600 when it could accommodate 800. Kids and adults like being at a winning rugby school…even if they don’t even play the game, which leads to my story below:
    .
    I was chatting to a US family from LA in a game reserve last year. Despite the fact that there are many top Universities in California (e.g. Berkeley, Stanford, UCLA, etc), the son chose to attend Michigan, which is a five hour flight away. It is also much colder, wetter and way more dangerous, as it’s surrounded by 3 of the 8 worst ranked cities in the whole of the US – incl. Detroit. So, I asked the obvious question why he chose Michigan and his answer was: “I wanted to go to a university with a great football program”. He didn’t even play football – he just wanted to support the team! Of course, he did add that Michigan’s academics is also highly ranked…but it’s not as high as at least three universities in California.

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 17:47
  33. avatar
    #201 Vleis

    @yesnomaybe (Comment #3)
    I’m a bit late to this thread.

    I think that your comment that wealth and toughness don’t mix is only partly true. For starters, most of the Irish rugby internationals went to private schools (probably over 80% of the 7s internationals) and they are ranked #2 in the world in both disciplines. Hopper can probably help us out…but I wouldn’t be surprised if 50% of English internationals went to posh schools.
    .
    In SA, schools like Affies and PRG are very much like private schools regarding their culture, facilities, academic excellence, etc…so are those guys soft? I’m not an expert re SS schools in CT…but, to me, there doesn’t even seem to be too much difference between the SACS kids and Bishops kids.

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 17:18
  34. avatar
    #200 Smallies

    @Ploegskaar (Comment #196)
    n Sterk en presterende rugby program is beslis nie die begin of eind3 van n skool nie …..maar dis BAIE BAIE makliker om goeie borge te kry vir al die skool se sporte as daar 10 000 mense om die Hoofveld sit op n Saterdag….

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 13:41
  35. avatar
    #199 Balikibaba

    @Grasshopper (Comment #185)
    We cant copy and paste here so can’t post the sachoolsports.co.za ranking, but go there, click on rankings, then cricket, then 1st X1. It’s there.

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 12:48
  36. avatar
    #198 Balikibaba

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #178)
    I agree. Let the boys play. But lets also help.

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 12:43
  37. avatar
    #197 Running_Rugby1861

    @NealW (Comment #195)
    13 game are scheduled? More absent or Injured?

    But yes We Def doing well in most sports.

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 12:39
  38. avatar
    #196 Ploegskaar

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #184)
    If those really mattered, there would not have been that voice note and this thread. I enjoy how people deflect with other codes and achievements when it suits them, while if their 1st rugby team is on top, a whole bag of zero fucks are given for those other hobbies and pastimes. Good on whoever sent that voice note and Wes for his response. Shows there isn’t a complete nonce and toff culture at Biskoppe and that there are people that understand and appreciate the value of a strong rugby program and performing 1st team

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 12:37
  39. avatar
    #195 NealW

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #194)
    Night series, Mazinter winners and a positive win ratio against all the major competitors – I think they are No.1. But yes they have slipped up once or twice. I see Boys High reckon we have 13 teams against them on Saturday. My guess is one or two more games will be cancelled before then.

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 12:27
  40. avatar
    #194 Running_Rugby1861

    @NealW (Comment #192)
    Bishops Waterpolo is in a good state at the moment, but number 1 not sure, we yet to win a major tournament.

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 09:47
  41. avatar
    #193 Grasshopper

    @NealW (Comment #192)
    Kearsney in the same boat…St Johns and St Stithians too….still great academic and sporting institutions. Rugby shouldn’t define success…

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 09:30
  42. avatar
    #192 NealW

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #182)
    Sorry I am being a touch hyperbolic – but let’s be honest this has been a long time coming. I think it has been partly head in sand because the first team has performed pretty well over the last few years and the very bad win ratio (taking all the teams into account) on any given Saturday was being ignored. Again I’m being hyperbolic I’m sure there was a group of parents/ teaches and coaches who were very concerned. Anyway now the 1st team isn’t performing and its doom and gloom. Of course it’s a bit ironic that other sports are doing so well this year. Since I follow water polo I would stick my neck out and say they are ranked number 1. So the athletes are playing other sports and the numbers for rugby are dwindling. I also wonder if playing B league is such a bad option. Anyway these issues have been playing out in other parts of the country.

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 09:19
  43. avatar
    #191 Grasshopper

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #188)
    The struggle is real. In KZN there is massive pressure from other sports, Basketball, hockey, soccer etc. The Asian community prefer hockey to rugby.

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 09:15
  44. avatar
    #190 Grasshopper

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #189)
    Come to KZN and play Glenwood, we need a chase to win a game ;-)…play Clifton, Kearsney and St Charles too…

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 09:13
  45. avatar
    #189 Running_Rugby1861

    I was laughed at and told it’s a sin to even think about B section but in all honesty, as a rugby loving Bishops old boy I would be very happy if Bishops played the likes off, Durbanville, Drostdy, Stellenberg, Parel Vallei, Milnerton, Brackenfell each year and then alternate between the 4 Winelands playing 2 yearly.

    There is a very valid reason why when Bishops goes on tour annually we don’t play Affies, Garsfontein or the likes and rather play Pretoria Boys, St Stithians or Jeppe fir example. Go figure

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 07:50
  46. avatar
    #188 Running_Rugby1861

    @Wyvern (Comment #186)
    According to certain ODs the money option is the way to go for now. But we all know 5 boys can go to a Government school for the cost of 1 fees.

    Tradition will never be list but in my opinion the main reason for the decline in numbers is.. More other sports on offer abd a very strong hockey program. I know if kid who played 14A and 15A rugby but now in 1st hockey.

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 07:46
  47. avatar
    #187 Running_Rugby1861

    @Grasshopper (Comment #185)
    Yes according to the only website that does rankings for cricket Bishops are 1st. Played 19 Won 15 lost 3 and drew 1. And they played basically all the cricketibg schools

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 07:42
  48. avatar
    #186 Wyvern

    @NealW (Comment #179)
    “A successful rugby school is one where the boys want to play” so true and agree 100%. The concerning point for Bishops (from my less informed point of view) isn’t necessarily the results or the fact that there’s less recruitment. It’s the idea that a school like Bishops that’s steeped in rugby tradition may be starting to lose or weaken it’s tradition as evidenced (maybe) by the declining number of boys wanting to play.

    There’s possibly only 2 options: either a great deal of money needs to be spent across all age groups or be content with playing more “B league” schools if the current trend continues.

    ReplyReply
    17 May, 2024 at 04:57
  49. avatar
    #185 Grasshopper

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #184)
    No 1 in cricket where? SA? That is highly debatable

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 22:02
  50. avatar
    #184 Running_Rugby1861

    @Grasshopper (Comment #183)
    Bishops is number 1 in Cricket, top 5 in hockey, top 6 in Waterpolo. WP league Champs in Squash.

    Also a contribution is that Bishops now offer Mountain Biking, trail running and Football as a sport.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 20:10
  51. avatar
    #183 Grasshopper

    The drop off in numbers is alarming in some schools. Affies & Maritzburg College probably the only schools who can really put out 30 teams, Paarl Schools & Grey Bloem too. Glenwood & DHS used to be able to do 26 at a push, probably 15 years ago. DHS in their slump could barely do 12, I think it’s more 16 now. Glenwood max 20. Hilton, Kearsney & Michaelhouse I think is about 16, so Bishops should be able to do the same. The numbers are there in the Cape. Focus should always be growing the sport & not 1st team & A team only. Elitism drives kids away. I think Bishops issue is a cost of living thing, maybe only 1% of the country can afford their fees & you can’t go give away 10 to 20 fee paying positions for bursaries. Maybe they should recruit expats sons, I probably would send my boy there from the UK, it’s affordable in pound terms, just. The likes of St John’s now offer more elite & niche sports to cater for lower numbers eg rowing, waterpolo, cycling etc where you only need a handful of athletes. I do fear an SA super league where only the schools who can put out 20 competitive teams will play each other. Westville & Jeppe are maybe there. Bishops maybe best to focus on waterpolo, chess & golf. Glenwood are scratching for a win this horrific season, get Bishops to play us! 😂

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 19:11
  52. avatar
    #182 Running_Rugby1861

    @NealW (Comment #179)
    Who is this everyone you refer to, as far as I know, those on the ground have been trying their hardest in certain circles with the little they gave, as far as the Executive goes they see rugby as just another sport apparently and no. Special treatment is given to that and that’s exactly why this article and the voice note were written or sent

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 18:19
  53. avatar
    #181 Roger

    @Balikibaba (Comment #161)
    shew – this is a similar trajectory to the Gauteng private schools – they really battle to field enough teams and remain competitive – St Johns are really the only one holding on (precipitously).

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 18:15
  54. avatar
    #180 yesnomaybe

    @Wyvern (Comment #173)
    I think defences at school level have improved ten fold with specialised defence coaches being employed plus you have access to video footage. Running the ball from everywhere will just get you into trouble most of time, decision making at 9 & 10 are crucial to this type of style plus you need good forwards to provide a solid base.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 17:47
  55. avatar
    #179 NealW

    @Wyvern (Comment #173)
    Of course to play that type of rugby requires a certain type of athlete. I think the success of the last few years (at the first team level ) was because they did have some very talented athletes. This hid from site the very poor results that the rest of the teams were putting together. It has been like watching a slow train wreck. Everybody has been putting their head in the sand hoping that somehow Wes would pull another rabbit out of the hat. A successful rugby school is one where the boys want to play. Too much focus on the first team is always a problem in the long run (watch out when Rassie moves on…).

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 17:38
  56. avatar
    #178 Running_Rugby1861

    @Balikibaba (Comment #177)
    Maybe the voice note, letter on Facebook has given this involved a real fright and maybe we not as bad as one looks from the outside. Baby steps. Let the boys play

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 16:49
  57. avatar
    #177 Balikibaba

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #176)
    I am also very proud of our history. It’s one of the reasons why OD’s should fight for the survival of rugby at Bishops at top schoolboy level.

    We played beautiful rugby against Stellenberg and the boys can be proud.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 16:40
  58. avatar
    #176 Running_Rugby1861

    @Balikibaba (Comment #171)
    As an Old boy my self I’m still very proud of our rugby. I’m still very proud that we gave so much to SA Rugby.

    As far as the brand we want to play. I personally think we trying as the try vs Stellenberg showed but it’s hard when u not doing well.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 16:35
  59. avatar
    #175 Running_Rugby1861

    @Wyvern (Comment #173)
    As far as I can see and I watch nearly every 1st XV game. You need to earn the right to go wide.

    Maybe it might be that the head coach played prop so he more comfortable keeping things tight, who knows

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 16:33
  60. avatar
    #174 Balikibaba

    @Wyvern (Comment #173)
    I am not close enough to the coaches to know reasons for change of brand.

    But, yes, Bishops were always known for their running rugby more than for the results.

    I think a solution is a combination of things, but I am not the expert; merely an observer.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 16:26
  61. avatar
    #173 Wyvern

    @Balikibaba (Comment #171)
    Is the solution as simple as just throwing $$$$ and identifying talented players? As you’ve pointed out there also seems to be a shift in the brand of rugby being played. Is this because there just aren’t the players to play that brand or a conscious shift in approach by the coaching structures?

    For me the brand of rugby is what separated Bishops from the rest, not necessarily the win %.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 14:36
  62. avatar
    #172 Balikibaba

    @yesnomaybe (Comment #170)
    Absolutely. Lets hope they do

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 14:28
  63. avatar
    #171 Balikibaba

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #169)
    Used to be.
    Used to be that Bishops OD’s were incredibly proud of Bishops rugby.
    Used to be that the school was famous for its brand of running rugby.
    Used to be that the school actually cared about the massive part Bishops played in the history of rugby in South Africa.

    As I said……used to be.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 14:26
  64. avatar
    #170 yesnomaybe

    I just hope Bishops become more like the Natal private schools as opposed to the Gauteng private schools where its basically B division already. You never really see too many private schools in Gauteng being represented at Craven week besides Helpmekaar who produce good sides most years. Most of the Gauteng private schools might have an occasional good year but in general they B division material. Hopefully Bishops rugby wakes up before that happens.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 14:23
  65. avatar
    #169 Running_Rugby1861

    @Balikibaba (Comment #161)
    Bishops is a rugby school iv been told by a few.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 14:18
  66. avatar
    #168 Balikibaba

    @Smallies (Comment #165)
    I am hoping its the former. Let’s see.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 14:17
  67. avatar
    #167 Balikibaba

    @NealW (Comment #164)
    I could not have said it better myself.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 14:16
  68. avatar
    #166 Balikibaba

    @Wyvern (Comment #162)
    Except I think Kingswood would beat us this year. Said with respect. It’s a good Kingswood side.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 14:16
  69. avatar
    #165 Smallies

    @Balikibaba (Comment #161)
    It’s very difficult to come back once the decline starts Bishops would do well to actively start recruiting as soon as possible….or they should seriously reconsider their current fixture list

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 13:51
  70. avatar
    #164 NealW

    @Balikibaba (Comment #161)
    Sadly that 80% may be higher. The effect is obvious as you say – numbers dwindling a struggle to get 14 teams out. You can’t blame the boys – who wants to to lose by 80 points (and with that a huge number of injuries – I should know I had my son in the hospital 4 years in a row). Unfortunately part of this is the WP school league that Bishops play in – a league that has slightly lost the plot with its “professionalism”.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 13:41
  71. avatar
    #163 Spice

    It will be lekker for Sharks GK side to stay at home for the week when they are in the Bay.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 13:27
  72. avatar
    #162 Wyvern

    @Balikibaba (Comment #161)
    Come tour the EC more often, let’s get that loss % under control!

    I joke, but seriously I’m shocked by that stat.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 13:26
  73. avatar
    #161 Balikibaba

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #151)
    Who said Bishops was in a crisis? I thought the OD’s were saying Bishops Rugby is in a crisis. And looking at the results across all age groups and teams, they are right. Bishops have lost more than 80% of their games right across the board over the last 4 years. And this is being kind, because this stat is elevated by first team results.

    Boys get thrashed week in and week out and it’s not fun. More boys give up rugby as a result every year. Proof of this is that Bishops are struggling to push out 13 teams this weekend against Boishaai. Apparently the criteria to play in the A league in WP is minimum 14 teams. I saw an OD post somewhere that SACS put out 20 teams against Paul Roos last weekend?

    At current trajectory Bishops won’t be able to field 10 teams on a weekend in a few years and rugby will die.

    If OD’s are not supposed to be concerned about that then I don’t know.

    So, why not fix it? Then the teams become more competitive and the boys start enjoying their rugby again? Is this such a bad thing?

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 12:32
  74. avatar
    #160 Balikibaba

    @yesnomaybe (Comment #146)
    ALOT not right. That’s the point.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 12:24
  75. avatar
    #159 Running_Rugby1861

    @kantako (Comment #158)
    What school did you go two.

    As you might guessed iv been involved in Or at My entire life in one way or another

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 12:21
  76. avatar
    #158 kantako

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #157)
    Not at all. Just not sure what you are asking 🤔?

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 10:32
  77. avatar
    #157 Running_Rugby1861

    @kantako (Comment #156)
    Sarcasm alert

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 09:52
  78. avatar
    #156 kantako

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #150)
    My background is currently a photo of my wife and kids

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 06:55
  79. avatar
    #155 agter_die_pale_pa

    @OUD ANKER (Comment #149)
    100%

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 05:49
  80. avatar
    #154 agter_die_pale_pa

    @kantako (Comment #152)
    Hard to argue from the perspective of 99.9% of boys, not planning to make a living from playing rugby.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 05:47
  81. avatar
    #153 Smallies

    @OUD ANKER (Comment #149)
    Stem saam met jou 100%

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 05:36
  82. avatar
    #152 kantako

    @OUD ANKER (Comment #149)
    Jy is stout vir n Boys High.

    ReplyReply
    16 May, 2024 at 04:17
  83. avatar
    #151 Running_Rugby1861

    @OUD ANKER (Comment #149)
    Tell that to those ODs who think otherwise. Bishops cricket is no1, hockey top 5, Waterpolo top 5 and we have the best Cambridge student in the world but apparently we in crisis

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 23:54
  84. avatar
    #150 Running_Rugby1861

    @kantako (Comment #148)
    What your background?

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 23:52
  85. avatar
    #149 OUD ANKER

    @Balikibaba (Comment #126)
    And Pretoria Boys High don’t give a flying toss!! They have give or take 300 form 1s (that is grade 8s) and receive more than 1500 applications each year! so they can literally pick and chose who to accept or not. Boys High is a public school, is NOT in an affluent area of Pretoria, has the HIGHEST public school fee rate in the country, yet has NO problem with parents paying, SO rugby is played in the school the way it is intended to be, FOR FUN, because it is a SCHOOL and not a professional rugby institution AND if they happen to have a super team with talent developed IN HOUSE like in 2019 when they beat the mighty AFFIES, great! but if they get smashed by Die Anker in 2024, no problem! but maybe in 2024 the 1st tennis or chess or mountain biking or war games team of Boys High will be the best in SA. Rugby DOES NOT define a school, finish and klaar!

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 22:54
  86. avatar
    #148 kantako

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #140)
    Thanx. I know exactly when Jonny was there. I speak to him very often 😉

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 22:14
  87. avatar
    #147 Ploegskaar

    @yesnomaybe (Comment #146)
    Harsh, lots of latent anger there

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 20:05
  88. avatar
    #146 yesnomaybe

    @Balikibaba (Comment #105)
    Think we’ve heard you cry enuf about the school not offering bursaries. It doesn’t matter who pays for it, its still a freebie. A bigger concern for Bishops is that the real bursaries that are on offer as per ur comment for the younger age groups are not really helping. The U14A, U15A & U16A have lost to all their Super A competitors so far this season so the 1st team have more than likely a better record than all of those sides. What makes it worse is that the B, C & D sides are not doing much better, they also getting spanked. Something not quite right.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 19:43
  89. avatar
    #145 Smallies

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #137)
    They also suddenly had their line out calls in Afrikaans

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 18:41
  90. avatar
    #144 Grasshopper

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #142)
    Not really, maybe a period of 5 years where they were very competitive in KZN and got one win over our very inconsistent 2013 side, Glenwood’s record vs George Campbell since 1963, played 31, won 28, lost 2 and drawn 1
    Lastest results;
    2000 – 52-0 – Won
    2001 – 21-7 – Won
    2002 – 19-14 – Won
    2003 – 29-6 – Won
    2004 – 17-7 Won
    2005 – 40-15 – Won
    2006 – 24-3 – Won
    2007 – DNP
    2008 – 71-0 – Won
    2009 – ?
    2010 – 34-6 – Won
    2011 – 28-3 – Won
    2012 – 34-19 – Won
    2013 – 12-13 – Lost
    2014 – 64-3 – Won

    Not played since. First loss was in 1971, score was 0-3. I would say Port Natal, Grosvenor, St Henrys (Marist Brothers) and Voortrekker were better at times with more losses to them. Mansfield was super tough too, our brothers from other mothers….

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 18:37
  91. avatar
    #143 Running_Rugby1861

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #141)
    Why are you so fascinated to know

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 17:50
  92. avatar
    #142 Kaya 85

    @Grasshopper (Comment #135)
    George Campbell at one stage could have been a contender as a proper rugby power…almost

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 17:17
  93. avatar
    #141 Kaya 85

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #140)
    Wes?

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 17:16
  94. avatar
    #140 Running_Rugby1861

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #136)
    I can only wish I played Boks @kantako (Comment #107)
    Jonny played in 10 and 11.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 16:52
  95. avatar
    #139 Kaya 85

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #138)
    lol…was going to congratulate you on that try vs Wallabies…when was it?

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 16:52
  96. avatar
    #138 Running_Rugby1861

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #136)
    I can only wish I played Boks

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 16:50
  97. avatar
    #137 Kaya 85

    @ForeverHorseFly (Comment #112)
    Exactly !! One of the reasons for Jeppe (and KES)’ continued rise is that since about mid noughts (ca. 2005/6) a number of the English medium primary schools that feed them started offering term 3 intro to rugby in senior primary…then this has gradually spread to offering rugby, in addition to soccer. The result is that more gade 8s have some rugby background…+ a number of Afrikaans medium rugby primaries have also gone dual medium so rugby not foreign in grade 8.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 16:43
  98. avatar
    #136 Kaya 85

    @kantako
    No…lol…I’m saying that @Running Rugby has too many writing errors to be the Principal. But I’ve got a feeling its Fleckie.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 16:37
  99. avatar
    #135 Grasshopper

    @ForeverHorseFly (Comment #134)
    In my day the handouts were not the same, I also got a partial bursary at Glenwood. DHS offered too. I get your point BUT mine was always going to be based on where my dad or other family attended, geography had a small part. Grosvenor was for Bluff surf rabble and my Afrikaans is kak. The closest school to me was actually Andries Pretorius but I think it was junior only in the 80s and 90s. I remember it well, elections with NP flags and blokes in khaki on horses, velskoen, hats and combs in their long brown socks. DHS have the buying power to convince kids from the Border and EC to attend Blackmores so the same for any school, it’s a free for all. So Glenwood have to let DHS raid our traditional feeders, same with Westville. Clifton recruited a Glenwood U15A prop 6 months ago. It’s something schools seem to have to just accept now. 10 years ago Glenwood got badly burnt by it all BUT now it’s all fine and dandy…..

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 15:05
  100. avatar
    #134 ForeverHorseFly

    @Grasshopper (Comment #131)
    You are ignoring your own argument, based off the fact that you were in primary school in the Bluff, you should have went to either Grosvenor Boys High or Dirkie Uys the same way you arguing Glenwood Prep kids should be going to Glenwood….yet you make no mention of them in your consideration and even went as far as to mention Kearsney as a potential school considered. So if you were afforded your choice of high school, why shouldn’t Glenwood Prep kids right now? Maybe they aren’t impressed with Glenwood the same way you weren’t impressed with DHS, who knows.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 14:52
  101. avatar
    #133 Grasshopper

    @Skywalker (Comment #130)
    Well it’s true, your posts are always balanced and thought through. Yeah, hoping for some decent performances from our U14 and U15 groups, with decent results in the C, D and E teams too. I have a huge passion for getting it right in the lower teams, proper technique in scrums, lineouts and tackling. Also, set a playing style for the school, so kids can step up easily to a higher team when injury occurs, same calls etc. College have always done this and results show…

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 14:29
  102. avatar
    #132 Grasshopper

    @Balikibaba (Comment #126)
    Yeah, also Bishops has run into a perfect storm with Wynberg, SACS and Bosch all having strong years so it looks worse. The Paarl Schools are top 5 so again very tough.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 14:26
  103. avatar
    #131 Grasshopper

    @ForeverHorseFly (Comment #120)
    My case is different, my dad attended DHS from 1964 to 1969 and his brother (my uncle) from 1974 to 1979, so I was offered to go there. My other uncles attended Glenwood in the 60s, so I was given three options, Kearsney on a 25% bursary, DHS and Glenwood. I attended interviews at all 3. I didn’t want to board and stop surfing, so Kearsney was out. My dad couldn’t really afford it anyway even with 25% off. DHS didn’t impress me and Glenwood seemed a better mix of boys for me, plus I had 10 Bluff mates going there. The bus trip from the Bluff was quicker too. Re DHS scooping all the Glenwood feeder talent, we know they have feelers in Glenwood Prep and Pinheiro is adamant on crushing his ex school plus he has a large purse to poach teachers, GOBs eg Dylan Cronje for Waterpolo & swimming etc. Anyway, we will be back and hopefully the biggest Durban derby returns, maybe once Pinheiro retires, it must be quite soon….he must be 60 by now.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 14:22
  104. avatar
    #130 Skywalker

    @Grasshopper (Comment #109)
    Thats the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me :) :lol:
    Great to have you on the blog still. Your point about the Glenwood junior teams is a good one. Will be sure to check out the junior results this weekend. It doesnt guarantee success, but if you have a good base to work from, and a group of boys who have played together mostly since Grade 8, and won age groups games, they arrive in the Open Age groups with some confidence and knowing they can compete. Often schools do then top up, and here coaching and combinations can make a difference, but you are at least in the running.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 13:38
  105. avatar
    #129 Balikibaba

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #127)
    Yes, agreed. The school overall is healthy. But, let’s hope that some attention gets given to an area that quite obviously needs it.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 13:11
  106. avatar
    #128 Balikibaba

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #123)
    I have heard the VN, and I am not sure it’s 100% what the coach said. It may have been his interpretation.

    But I do think there is a crisis. I think the coach would even agree. I believe they are trying to address it.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 12:58
  107. avatar
    #127 Running_Rugby1861

    @Balikibaba (Comment #124)
    As an OD my self and someone who also lives for the school like you do, let’s just hope that things do start to improve, how ever slowly.

    But at the same time sport at the school overall is I gather in a healthy state

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 12:40
  108. avatar
    #126 Balikibaba

    @Grasshopper (Comment #118)
    And, unfortunately, their results speak for themselves.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 12:38
  109. avatar
    #125 Balikibaba

    @Ploegskaar (Comment #117)
    Let’s hope so.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 12:37
  110. avatar
    #124 Balikibaba

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #123)
    Then I made an assumption that you were referring to him as he is the one who is helping with said boy. Apologies. I am not aware of who the other OD is.

    I also have all his DVD’s :lol:

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 12:36
  111. avatar
    #123 Running_Rugby1861

    @Balikibaba (Comment #108)
    That same voice note has gotten a few people upset, even on this thread, there’s a copy of what the coach had to say,

    What’s current taking place has nothing to do with any rugby videos, by the way I have all those Dvds.

    But to say what’s current happening at the school is a crisis is a little over the top.

    Discussions are good and healthy and important, but majority of schools go thru slumps, it takes level heads to get one out of the situation.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 12:30
  112. avatar
    #122 Running_Rugby1861

    @Grasshopper (Comment #90)
    That still happens, but those that make the decisions don’t really listen or have not 4 now

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 12:16
  113. avatar
    #121 Ploegskaar

    On the subject of recruitment, I have been watching some A1 (3rd league) fixtures of late as well. Anyone looking for a lock/big blind to fill a gap, just needs to get in touch. Gr11 but u18 this year, an absolute machine, natural athlete, with a big old diesel engine that can keep going well past 70min. Good soft skills as well, probably around 2m/100Kg. Currently on a school feeding scheme, so 3 meals a day and good conditioning should get him to 110Kg easily. Think he could be a long term prospect, especially for schools with club affiliations. Can also move now, with the blessing of his coach

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 12:09
  114. avatar
    #120 ForeverHorseFly

    @Grasshopper (Comment #115)
    Haha..The fact that you yourself lived in the Bluff but bypassed Grosvenor Boys High or Durban Academy(Dirkie Uys) on your way to Glenwood or that Toti kids left Amanzimtoti High, Kingsway and Kuswag to attend Glenwood clearly illustrates that just because a primary school is in the same area, doesn’t mean the kids that go there ultimately choose that high school. If the Penzance and Glenwood Prep kids want to bypass Glenwood on their way to DHS, kinda the same thing.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 12:06
  115. avatar
    #119 kantako

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #111)
    Hahaha hope you are not judging me, I often post late night and after I have spent all day in my 7th language.

    If its Robbie, he might still recover from that Deon Keiser tackle.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 12:03
  116. avatar
    #118 Grasshopper

    @Balikibaba (Comment #116)
    The Pretoria Boys High crowd might trump that pedestal, they’ve been saying absolutely no sponsorships, no OB money, no nothing…..they just take boys in organically as they apply with no advertising etc…..

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:56
  117. avatar
    #117 Ploegskaar

    @Balikibaba (Comment #116)
    Great that you have an OD that is not sitting on his hands. Bishops had some good boys that were helped over the years, some very Afrikaans ones at times as well! Hope they get things up and running soon, preferably with a measured, structured and discreet approach

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:54
  118. avatar
    #116 Balikibaba

    @Ploegskaar (Comment #114)
    They ended the relationship and Bishops never went out and looked for a new one. We were, until this year, the only top flight rugby school without a sponsor for around a decade. Ludicrous……..but true.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:49
  119. avatar
    #115 Grasshopper

    @ForeverHorseFly (Comment #112)
    Good point and all the Glenwood feeder schools on the Bluff, in Toti and Queensburgh. I came from the Bluff and only played soccer until standard 5, so rugby was a shock in standard 6. What I would say to DHS is leave the south of Tollgate bridge to us, leave our stars at Glenwood Prep & Penzance alone ;-)

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:49
  120. avatar
    #114 Ploegskaar

    What happened to that Vital sponsorship from a few years back? Those were good times for Bishops with plenty of school stars and CW players. Maybe time to boost the rugby program with some supplements again?

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:44
  121. avatar
    #113 Balikibaba

    @Grasshopper (Comment #79)
    There are 4 u14 bursary boys.
    There are 3 to 5 in under 15
    I am not sure of u16

    What I said is that there are currently zero bursary boys in the CURRENT FIRST XV.

    You dont have to find it hard to believe. It’s just fact. These are the u14 boys from the Covid years. Bishops didn’t give out any bursaries then and never filled them up either over the next few years.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:42
  122. avatar
    #112 ForeverHorseFly

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #103)
    To your point, I’ve often wondered why a school like Morningside Primary which is traditionally a DHS feeder school never played rugby. Surely it would be in DHS interest to even financially help the school start the rugby program(maybe even get a few of their coaches and players to run rugby clinics). There are alot of other Primary schools as well in the greater Durban area such as Durban Primary in Umbilo, Glenmore Primary, Addington Primary etc which all have great sports facilities and large fields but have all been traditionally soccer playing schools. Even if rugby doesn’t become the main sport, surely having the kids introduced to the game at an earlier age helps the overall depth of the u14 team when these kids naturally move over from Primary to High School.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:40
  123. avatar
    #111 Kaya 85

    @kantako (Comment #106)
    too many spelling / grammar errors to be a Head of the School, maybe its Robbie Fleck

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:39
  124. avatar
    #110 Balikibaba

    @kantako (Comment #107)
    Hehe….has it been that long? :lol:

    Look, even last year there were 1 or 2 rugby bursray boys in the first team. But this matric year are the covid boys from Gr 8 and Bishops never offered any bursaries to that year and 5 years later still none.

    I do know there are 4 bursary boys in the u14 side now, so I have not been denying that Bishops don’t offer bursaries. I was just stating that the current first team have none. And they have also fallen behind other schools in their rugby programme who did not fall asleep during the covid years

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:36
  125. avatar
    #109 Grasshopper

    @Skywalker (Comment #101)
    Love your posts mate, rational, thoughtful, intelligent and spot on. This looks to be what Glenwood are trying to do too now. Our 1st and U16As getting blown away but U15 and U14 are there or there abouts, we now just need to retain those youngsters, keep the gees, get the best coaches and ensure our friends from across the Berea and elsewhere don’t come knocking when the players are in grade 11 with a juicy offer and a Sharks contract….

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:36
  126. avatar
    #108 Balikibaba

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #88)
    At least he’s willing to put his money where his mouth is and try help. That same person also gave up hundreds of hours of his time for FREE for almost 10 years filming the first team, putting together what is still some of the best schoolboy rugby footage in the world. He was never paid a cent and he funded all travel including internation travel himself. Ask Dave Mallett if he brought value to the team back then.
    Its unfortunate that you choose to personally attack a fellow OD publicly who is only trying to make a difference. You may not agree with his method, but show some level of respect for his contribution.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:33
  127. avatar
    #107 kantako

    @Balikibaba (Comment #105)
    Not emotional at all. You are wrong. Jonny was not there almost 10 years ago.

    He was there almost 15 years ago.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:33
  128. avatar
    #106 kantako

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #99)
    Thank you. I just put Jonny in there as bait. Your facts around him is 100% accurate. I now believe you are someone very connected to the school, maybe DOR or even Headmaster 😋.

    Believe it or not my current “boss” is actually a Bishops old boy 😅. Great school he tells me 👊🏻.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:29
  129. avatar
    #105 Balikibaba

    @kantako (Comment #95)
    Please read my comment PROPERLY before getting emotional. Johnny was definitely ona rugby bursary ALMOST TEN YEARS AGO NOW. Likewise Suleiman Hartzenberg and a few others.

    If you read my comment carefully, I said that Bishops have fallen behind and CURRENTLY THERE ARE NO RUGBY BURSARY BOYS IN THE FIRST TEAM. THIS IS FACT. Not sure how my statement is so confusing?

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:28
  130. avatar
    #104 Balikibaba

    @Skywalker (Comment #96)
    Definitely its not a badge of honour. Its a blight on the executive leadership at the school.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 11:25
  131. avatar
    #103 Kaya 85

    And rugby as a sport choice in townships and non-traditional rugby areas all over has gained a helluva lot of ground since 2019 especially, but even before. You might find that different rugby schools start to emerge stronger (Springs Boys High is a good example, rugby was essentially dead there, then resurrected… Sarel Cilliers of northern KZN too, also other examples in towns all over) and that a Glenwood could again become a major force…I’m seeing boys in non rugby schools walking to school with rugby balls under their arms, steely look in their eyes…rugby has shaken off a lot of old connotations, once it grabs the imagination and gets ingrained in communities…

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 09:39
  132. avatar
    #102 Running_Rugby1861

    @Skywalker (Comment #101)
    Bishops should do the same… One can hope. Easily not sure about that. I know Clifton is also a private school but Bishops Prep and WPPS are the main feeder schools to the College and while their rugby is decent when they play schools that match them in numbers they don’t set the word alight.

    To be honest there no real stars to look out for. Decent as a team but nobody stands out.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 09:35
  133. avatar
    #101 Skywalker

    CLIFTON U14A

    To make my point, the Clifton u14A team are quietly going about their business here in KZN turning the tide. While the Clifton 1st team is still losing by big margins to the other KZN schools their u14A team is not.
    Lost to Maritzburg College 14:12
    Beat Westville 14:12
    Beat Northwood 12:5
    Beat St Charles 19:5 & 20:10
    Lost to Glenwood 12:0
    Went unbeaten at the Glenwood rugby festival

    The majority of the team were in the Clifton u13A Prep team, who were exceptional and beat DPHS for the first time.

    They have not won every game, but the results show they are clearly in the mix, and if they stay together as a team, should certainly be competitive for the next few years against the other KZN schools, and set themselves up for a 1st team in 2028 that should be able to compete as well. Another strong u14A team next year will be key to ensure this because the u17 and u18 age groups merge when it becomes the ‘Open’ age group (ie Grade 11s and Grade 12s).

    Bishops could do the same quite easily.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 09:27
  134. avatar
    #100 Running_Rugby1861

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #94)
    I’m. Not sure what the definition of recruitment is but if it means Boys who did not go Bishops Prep or Wpps Then we Def have a few of those.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 09:23
  135. avatar
    #99 Running_Rugby1861

    @kantako (Comment #95)
    Jonny Kotze came to Bishops in a time they had a different approach to Rugby. A title sponsor was around and an Advert was put in the paper for all 2 see. Jonny applied and the rest is history.

    Time are changing but it seems Bishops are being left behind. Not saying you have to buy players to survive.

    I know they not but if Bishops was a KZN or EC school they be winning far more than present

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 09:19
  136. avatar
    #98 Skywalker

    @Grasshopper (Comment #97)
    100% it will make it even easier. It really wont take much, but they will need to be patient and build from the ground up again. Thats the hardest part, telling parents and Old Boys to wait 5 years to see results at 1st team.
    Also to be fair other schools keep pushing as well, so the bar does continue to raise, but they need to start now and the fix will come. At least they can solve this. The image of the school and its reputation does need it to be.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 09:06
  137. avatar
    #97 Grasshopper

    @Skywalker (Comment #96)
    Spot on, and the Cape is fulling up with the rest of SA that wants to live there.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 09:01
  138. avatar
    #96 Skywalker

    I find this whole thing quite puzzling to be honest, as i didnt realise the state that Bishops rugby seems to be in. I have always seen Bishops as a top rugby school in terms of 1st team at least. The Lleyds brothers, Tim Swiel, Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu etc. are just some recent names from teams who were very competitive and always up there in SA.

    I cant understand how they are suddenly not. Have SACS and others just upped their game?

    To be honest, saying you dont recuit and having no bursaries for rugby is perhaps not the badge of honour you want. Perhaps they have been able to rely on their strong history and brand name to not need this in the past, but times have changed. They need to be more intentional then.

    In 2014 Hilton lost 67-7 to Glenwood. They realised they had to compete better in rugby due to all the factors i have mentioned in other posts, and got to work. They tranformed into the best team in KZN and even a top 10 team in SA at one point. Bishops have the money, resources, contacts etc to do the same. It wont take much to put some impetus into a high quality Grade 8 intake for rugby, especially if they have done absolutely nothing untill now (apparently). You get a good u14A team going and the strength then trickles down, as the B team strengthens and so on. You do that for 2 or 3 years and you are back in business. No need to break rules, or steal players. They are an elite private school, they will find willing boys wanting to come.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 08:53
  139. avatar
    #95 kantako

    THE BISHOP OF BRAKPAN

    Bullshit Bishops dont recruit and dont give full bursaries to rugby players.🤣🤣

    Maybe ask Johny Kotze, currently playing in Japan. He went to school at Die Anker in Brakpan grade 8 and 9, before Bishops poached him in grade 10.

    He ended up playing Wp Craven week, SA schools, Stormer and Bulls and now in Japan. Worked out well for him.

    But please dont play the Garsfontein card, we dont buy we dont recruit blah blah blah.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 08:51
  140. avatar
    #94 Kaya 85

    I find the argument that “we don’t recruit…we have 0 recruits in the first team” a little bit thin, especially since that school has a budget for at least 2 full time rugby coach positions who are not educators at all. So you do in fact recruit…you ‘recruit’ pro coaches …not players.

    Other schools will recruit players and develop their own teacher/coaches. Some do both. All comes down to budget…

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 08:24
  141. avatar
    #93 Running_Rugby1861

    @Grasshopper (Comment #90)
    Def they do and it has helped become there are boys at the school who have come because of word of mouth.

    That’s exactly how Connor Evans ended up at Bishops. Same for 1 chap in U14.

    You play that side, person X stands out and the rest is history. But it’s costly just to say yes to everyone

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 08:22
  142. avatar
    #92 Running_Rugby1861

    @KES Oldboy (Comment #91)
    So far the new chap played 10 min off the Bench v SACS and started on the wing vs Stellenberg. Thus far nobody has been dropped because we had an injury in the center.

    But if fully it then who knows

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 08:20
  143. avatar
    #91 KES Oldboy

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #88)
    Apologies- I mis-read that. Yes your prep school numbers look right and are the same as St John’s & St Stithians in JHB at 75/grade. Old boys & their egos! I haven’t heard the voice note & it hasn’t affected my opinion of Bishops because it’s just one old boy. But if he’s actually doing something about it, then good for him but it’s still a bit unfortunate for the incumbent player who has to get dropped.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 08:12
  144. avatar
    #90 Grasshopper

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #84)
    Really? So no OBs use their status to attract any kids? A little chat here and there….

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 08:04
  145. avatar
    #89 Grasshopper

    @Tang (Comment #85)
    OBs with good businesses pumping cash into the school. Westville is or was an affluent area with tons of old money. I think swimming success has attracted the best so for swimming it’s an easy sell or smaller bursary. To get a Jannie from outside of KZN it has to be a plush BE bed & the rest. Westville get most of the sports stars from the Glenwood area, Glenwood Prep & Penzance. In fact Chad Le Clos went to Penzance a traditional Glenwood feeder school.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 08:03
  146. avatar
    #88 Running_Rugby1861

    @KES Oldboy (Comment #87)
    Maybe read my writing again, I’m referring to the Junior Schools numbers. Look at Under 9 alone. Yes it’s 10 a side but Bishops Prep has 6 teams and SACS has 9. In terms of that Old Boy and his voice note. Unfortunately that individual now thinks he king maker. He has the cash so he paying for our new boy to be there. Because he has 💲💲he thinks he can storm the Principals office and demand meetings. Because to him it’s a ‘crisis’

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 07:42
  147. avatar
    #87 KES Oldboy

    @Running_Rugby1861 (Comment #80)
    I’m not sure what all the fuss is about. It seems to me like some old boy left a voice message moaning about the state of Bishops rugby. So what? It happens that schools go through years when they battle. And what is that old boy going to do about it? Nothing – “The School” are in charge. And you can bet that Bishops will still be full next year! But where do you get your figures of number of boys at Bishops vs SACS? If you follow their matric results, Bishops have roughly 150 matrics every year – not dissimilar to SACS, Bosch & Wynberg. So the numbers story is not accurate & is irrelevant. Do New Zealand complain about the size of their population? I think this whole thing is a storm in a tea-cup. Very few boys move mid-season. Hardly anyone “repeats” for rugby anymore as is evidenced by the number of U19s playIng – very few! And there’s nothing wrong with the current structure of schools being primarily “places of learning”. The good players still come through but what’s probably most interesting is that in the last 2 world cups, many of The Boks have come from “non-traditional” schools. So maybe it’s all a bit over-hyped.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 07:27
  148. avatar
    #86 Tang

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #45)
    :-D I’m not opposed to some Gen AI help now and again.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 07:06
  149. avatar
    #85 Tang

    @Grasshopper (Comment #55)
    How do they afford this? Surely they can’t sustain these levels.

    ReplyReply
    15 May, 2024 at 07:03
  150. avatar
    #84 Running_Rugby1861

    @yesnomaybe (Comment #82)
    Bishops has 0 scouts

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 23:21
  151. avatar
    #83 Running_Rugby1861

    @yesnomaybe (Comment #82)
    Anybody who knows Bishops rugby knows who the person is you talking to, Bishops Prep play them each year in the 3rd term.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 23:13
  152. avatar
    #82 yesnomaybe

    My views are very clear, it doesn’t matter who is paying or not paying. No one actually cares, but to state that no one in the 1st team is on a bursary whether thru the school or being paid for by someone else is incorrect. I’m referring to someone I know about who is definitely being assisted for rugby playing ability but unfortunately when a junior school kid comes into the system it doesn’t always work out as when they lose their size & speed advantage they become just another average player which is exactly what happened. This is a common occurrence & u only have to see the names of boys that played Craven week u13 vs when when they played at U18 level. Very few actually go all the way. My suggestion to this problem – Bishops to host an annual U16 tournament for smaller/ lesser known schools. Get ur scouts out there as you will always find some great talent at these schools. Get ur marketing team together & offer 2 boys a 2 year bursary as opposed to the normal 5 years. Gimmies been doing this for years. At least u guaranteed they will be good enough/ big enough/ fast enough to make the 1st team the following year. So you are then guaranteed that you have 4 boys on bursary in the 1st team at all times. This will no doubt help with the current situation.
    You are well aware of the rules of this blog when it comes to names otherwise I would let you know, plus, I’m sure there are other names too that are being assisted, but thats not important.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 22:50
  153. avatar
    #81 Running_Rugby1861

    @Balikibaba (Comment #78)
    How or why a kid is at a certain school and who pays us nobody business.

    That’s between the kid, his family and those paying.

    As Jesus said, if you helping others don’t shout so everyone can know

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 21:37
  154. avatar
    #80 Running_Rugby1861

    Thank you for featuring Bishops on your platform. Yes Bishops rugby is not in the best position at this momebt but the kids who represent the 1st XV each week are giving it their best and doing what they can to try succeed.

    The coaches it seems are trying as hard as they can. Yes a few are out of their depth at that level and in my opinion they lacking a educator to over sea things but to his credit, Wes has stuck around abd done his best with limited resources.

    We never been a school where if we see we lack a 15 at U14 level go find one 4 grade 9. That’s just not us.

    In regards to the Prep School. That’s a numbers game. Wynberg always bulk up in U12 and 13 and SACS do the same.

    Bishops has 75 in a grade and roughly 50 rugby players while SACS has 120 in a grade so yes they going to have more talented boys on occasions.

    I’d like to thank everyone who commented as it’s great to see we still of reivance.

    If Bishops can let the boys play a bit like they did vs Stellenberg you might just see magic happen.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 21:33
  155. avatar
    #79 Grasshopper

    @Balikibaba (Comment #78)
    I think the statement of no recruitment is a little far fetched, you saying Bishops does no advertising or promotion of the school at all? No going to primary schools to promote the school? All of that is a type of recruitment. No Tank Lanning or others part paying for a kid? No fund giving out bursaries & scholarships? I find that very hard to believe. I’m not taking a pop, just keen to know.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 20:52
  156. avatar
    #78 Balikibaba

    @yesnomaybe (Comment #47)
    You seem to have a strong view on this.

    Let me assure you, apart from said player, THERE IS NO PLAYER IN THE CURRENT BISHOPS FIRST TEAM WHO IS THERE BECAUSE OF A RUGBY BURSARY OR ANYONE PAYING FOR HIM BECAUSE OF RUGBY. ZERO. And if you know of one, please name him. You won’t be able to, though, because there isn’t one.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 19:44
  157. avatar
    #77 Smallies

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #76)
    Cricket as well Faf ,AB both Affies oldboys

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 19:17
  158. avatar
    #76 Kaya 85

    @Smallies (Comment #74)
    Affies fantastic athletics school…and other sports…swimming too.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 18:49
  159. avatar
    #75 Grasshopper

    @Smallies (Comment #74)
    Agreed. With semigration to the Cape & mainly Northern Suburbs, the talent pool is far larger. In KZN the pool of talent is tiny & rugby is not played much in primary school. Maritzburg College like Grey Bloem as attracted the best due to historical performance & once again large boarding facilities. Glenwood was once the leaders in athletics & swimming in KZN, when rugby was poor. It’s hard to be good at it all without a good large BE. Glenwood’s BE is 250 strong & day dogs are just lazy or travelling too far

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 18:36
  160. avatar
    #74 Smallies

    @Grasshopper (Comment #73)
    Nothing wrong with investing in a top notch rugby program….those schools do a lot of work on their rugby ….but if you look closer their other sporting codes are also top ten in most instances, and Gim does it with less than 600 boys

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 18:26
  161. avatar
    #73 Grasshopper

    @NealW (Comment #70)
    I will start, every year its Grey Bloem, Paarl Gim, Boishaai, Paul Roos, Affies and probably Monnas, then the rest who can sort of compete every now and then. Those 6 should just play each other 5 times a year and create their own league. Over 20 teams and competitive……Bishops is not in their league any longer.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 18:00
  162. avatar
    #72 Kaya 85

    @Snelvuur (Comment #64)
    didnt know about Dieter, will check his career. Thx Sneller

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 17:54
  163. avatar
    #71 Kaya 85

    @NealW (Comment #70)
    wise words Neal

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 17:53
  164. avatar
    #70 NealW

    @Balikibaba (Comment #28)
    Well said. It’s laughable for Bishops to be accused of anything since Bishops has been doing zero on the recruiting front. Everyone seems to focus on what happened in the distant past with Bishops as if that is relevant. Wes should have just ignored Theo – how is he responsible for some Dad’s point of view. In this thread we can see plenty of comments about the game becoming more professional well I think the same top 10 schools are already 80% there (is there ever a change in the top 5 from year to year? – I can pencil them in for 2025 season already). This top clique really just want to play each other and good for them. At least the results are close – I’m never sure what point there is in schools losing 80-90 nil. It’s no good for the pupils (on the winning or losing side) and it does no good for rugby – the dwindling numbers are an obvious outcome. There is too much emphasis on the first and “A” teams as if the health of rugby depends on their performance. If we want a future for rugby we need more boys playing it.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 17:44
  165. avatar
    #69 Smallies

    @Rainier (Comment #68)
    Shoe ne en Mahomes word gerate as die beste Q back in die NFL

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 17:42
  166. avatar
    #68 Rainier

    @Smallies (Comment #66)

    Mahomes is 8ste op die lys, 10 miljoen dollars per jaar minder as Joe Burrow.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 17:36
  167. avatar
    #67 Kaya 85

    @Roger (Comment #65)
    rugby is an infant compared to that. Exactly, Liebenberg the ex Affies guy also basically made it only to the Training squads of a few teams…but the money is more than Etzebeth or Kolisi…or maybe not quite, but you get the picture. NFL and Soccer is Musk level.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 17:33
  168. avatar
    #66 Smallies

    @Roger (Comment #65)
    Mahomes is proparbly the most valuable player in the NFl at the moment

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 17:18
  169. avatar
    #65 Roger

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #63)
    Louis Rees Zammit’s ROOKIE contract with the Kansas City Chiefs is $3 million over three years – which is waaay more than what he was earning at Gloucester. If he makes it as a running back in the NFL, his next contract will increase ten-fold. To put that into perspective – Patrick Mahomes, the Chief’s quarterback, signed a $450 million, ten year contract with the Chiefs – $45 million per year

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 17:14
  170. avatar
    #64 Snelvuur

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #63)
    There is also currently a PRG Old Boy playing in the NFL, by the way – Dieter Eiselen.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 16:55
  171. avatar
    #63 Kaya 85

    @kantako (Comment #62)
    its nowhere near the salaries that Football players earn in the US or European Football/Soccer. There is that former Affies player who went to play Gridiron in the States after going on a Track and Field Scholarship… he played College Football and then didnt quite crack the NFL proper, but his salaries over the 3 or 4 years approached 800k USD, so more than most rugby pros…

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 16:43
  172. avatar
    #62 kantako

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #42)
    Thanx. Yes, Im not big on swimming if it’s not on the beaches of Cornwall. Looks like some might make it through swimming in SA, but im pretty sure it’s all privately and not via the inter high gala.

    While you mention Tatiana Schoenmaker, was she not in Noordheuwel, a school that doesn’t even have a pool. And then got scouted/recruited/garsfonteined to relocate due to her swimming abilities ? It’s all the same.

    Look at the figures that @roger stated. In the end, that is what we want our rugby players to earn. Make them professional as young as possible, and let them earn big money. HANDRE POLLARD among the highest earners in World Rugby is on an R20m salart a year. Shit that doesn’t even cover all the medical bills he has been through.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 15:13
  173. avatar
    #61 Smallies

    @Grasshopper (Comment #54)
    Yes he did

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 15:06
  174. avatar
    #60 Smallies

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #57)
    No its not however its the best route almost all US olympic swimmers go that route and if you can get a quality education free of charge thrown in, why not ….

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 15:04
  175. avatar
    #59 Deon

    @OUD ANKER (Comment #48)
    I just had a look at the top performing schools, not my list, I do not have one, and asked rather than I stated. Where does PGHS feature on the list compared to Affies girls the past few years? I merely advanced an argument that the top Gauteng rugby/sport schools are also top academic schools and are more balanced than PBHS judged by lists not compiled by me, focusing on more than mathematics, the way Tang wants it, broad based. That is the beginning and end of my initial argument. Then I had a closer look at this matter of diversity and inclusivity and almost vomited when I read what happens at Bishops and what some of the pupils’ version of inclusivity entails. Sick. “Under no circumstances should white people enter POC safe spaces, and non-LGBTQI+ people should not be allowed in queer safe spaces.” If this is education, decolonised as they call it, say no more, a sad day. Read for yourself : https://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/western-cape/bishops-matric-class-lists-their-20-demands-as-they-call-out-racism-discrimination-49093454

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 14:40
  176. avatar
    #58 Kaya 85

    @ Beet
    Did Theo take his post down? Note that the link to the post not there anymore.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 14:39
  177. avatar
    #57 Kaya 85

    @Smallies (Comment #51)
    @Grasshopper (Comment #54)
    Yes on both counts…Collegiate route is very attractive, but as per my point, it is obviously not the only viable route, in fact with the current generation of elite SA swimmers it is not first choice either.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 14:33
  178. avatar
    #56 Grasshopper

    @kantako (Comment #15)
    I like your alternative view, good debate. In the UK Hartpury College is like that, a sports academy. Millfield School is a private school but very focused on sport. If that is future, then yes create academies that are separate to the schools. The thing is schools in SA carry the history and traditions that make schoolboy rugby in SA so unique, war cries, rivalries etc. These academies will need to start from scratch. In terms of rugby as a profession, not sure conversion is as good as people think. I’ve looked at some of the best teams and maybe 2 or 3 ‘make it’ in a paying career that then ends at 35, what do they do next? I think throwing all your eggs into the rugby basket is not a good idea. In the UK, kids school sport in Gov schools is not big, if you are good at something you go to a club and get private training. The schools main role is to provide a great education. Yes, there are no compulsory Saturdays and less ‘gees’ but gosh the schools are a conveyor belt for kids going to Russel Group Universities etc. I like the club route but that is just me. Schools rugby should remain amateur and for everyone with great basics coaching at the E, F and G level teams. The more kids playing the better…

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 14:33
  179. avatar
    #55 Grasshopper

    @Tang (Comment #18)
    More like 20 to 30 rugby bursaries a year, some partial. I heard Westville gave out 80 last year across all sports…

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 14:26
  180. avatar
    #54 Grasshopper

    @Smallies (Comment #51)
    Didn’t Roeland Schoeman go US Collegiate route too?

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 14:24
  181. avatar
    #53 Grasshopper

    @Skywalker (Comment #34)
    Agree with all your points, add location to the mix. I’ve said it to you before. Northwood are the only ex ModelC Boys school on the north coast, Ballito and Umhlanga are affluent areas with many properties owned by Joburg business people. Northwood has benefitted from this location. Glenwood and DHS are in super run down areas now, BUT they both have BE’s to try attract decent kids in. My father-in-law was a Northlands OB and I get his Knights OB emails now. Northwood are engaging well with their OBS and I bet attracting good additional income. For me, Glenwood are fighting an uphill battle with Umbilo at it’s doorstep. Their feeder areas of the Bluff, Toti and Queensburgh are run down too. Westville are poaching all the Penzance talent and DHS/Clifton/Kearsney are the Glenwood Prep talent. I can’t see us remaining in the top tier for too long, unfortunately….

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 14:23
  182. avatar
    #52 Kaya 85

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #42)
    But coming back to the swimming point:
    the pathway to elite swimming in SA is totally through swimming clubs and the districts, so although schools have teams and galas and interhighs…those are very seasonal and elite level swimming is year round, hence the club model.
    Maybe it is better if rugby goes this route, just too much expectation on schools.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 14:19
  183. avatar
    #51 Smallies

    @Kaya 85 (Comment #42)
    Ryk Neethling Grey old boy ,trained in the USA though

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 14:17
  184. avatar
    #50 Roger

    Cole Palmer and Phil Foden, two of the best young talents in English football, were both privately educated at St Bedes College Manchester, from an early age – fully funded by the Manchester City Youth Academy. Cole Palmer was sold to Chelsea for £40 million at age 21 and earns £80,000 per week. He has just turned 22. Phil Foden earns £225,000 per week and is 23. His six year contract with Man City is worth £60 million. I would say their bursaries were good value for Man City!!

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 14:08
  185. avatar
    #49 yesnomaybe

    & Im not against what Bishops did, Like you say he would’ve been taken by another school. Hopefully he’s not under too much pressure & will make a difference as there’s still a long way to go this year & with my Academic levels, Bishops are going to struggle to beat anyone else this year unless they drastically improve. St. Andrews will be their best shot.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:53
  186. avatar
    #48 OUD ANKER

    @Deon (Comment #40)
    Prof Deon, you are wrong regarding Pretoria Boys High and academics. First of all you can’t/should not group/compare PBHS and Affies with the co-ed schools or with Affies Meisies for that matter. It is a well known fact that boys are lazy buggers and when an all boy school achieves a 100% matric pass rate it is reason for huge celebrations, now to come back to PBHS, for the last 2 years (it could be more) they had the most university of Pretoria mathematics exemptions of ALL schools, they are the only of the schools on your list that teaches advanced mathematics as a school and not an extracurricular subject…now you can argue, so what, who cares about Mathematics only, but as an esteemed prof you should know how important mathematics is…as a matter of fact rugby is a game of mathematics and science!…so I will argue your comment that PBHS can’t be compared academically with the other schools in your list….and PBHS is a government school, therefore follows no fancy Cambridge or IEB curriculum.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:52
  187. avatar
    #47 yesnomaybe

    The comment on not a single boy in the 1st team at Bishops is on a bursary is not quite factually right. What is the difference if the school is giving the bursary or whether the Old Boys Union or a parent is paying for him, it is still a freebie/bursary. Whether Donald Trump pays for it or some union it is still a bursary. Please go check facts about the current 1st team players before making that statement. The school might not have offered it but someone is paying for it. Either way its exactly the same thing. The colour of money is exactly the same.
    A few years back we had the issue of Paarl recruiting a SACS & Wynberg Boy whilst on a bursary at their respective schools, yet Paarl turns around & states that they didn’t offer anything but the Old Boys Union are sitting there with a smile on their face. Same same Im afraid.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:45
  188. avatar
    #46 Roger

    what’s the kerfuffle here? I read Theo Garrun’s article and he is alluding to a whatsapp voice note from an old boy saying the school needs to radically overhaul their rugby program, coaches are kak and players not good enough and they need to start recruiting. He didn’t mention Bishops? Why did Wes Chetty have a pop at Theo? Why is everyone talking about a boy who went from Rustenberg to Glenwood to Bishops? I’m lost but it’s late at night here!

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:45
  189. avatar
    #45 Kaya 85

    @Tang (Comment #31)
    Did Chat GPT or AI write that for you? :)
    (just a joke) so well written.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:42
  190. avatar
    #44 Deon

    @Balikibaba (Comment #28)
    Thankfully the weirdness of the Hollow Victory circa 80’s post-matric era is over.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:34
  191. avatar
    #43 Deon

    @Grasshopper (Comment #12)
    Cambridge is highly overrated, especially ito mathematics and science, and it shows at university. Both my kids did it and my step kids not.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:32
  192. avatar
    #42 Kaya 85

    @kantako (Comment #29)
    “One swimmer that went to school in SA…?”
    Tatiana Schoenmaker (now Smith)Olympic Gold…school + university in SA
    Lara van Niekerk – Olympic Gold …school and now full time training in SA
    Kaylene Corbett – Olympic Finalist – same..quailified as a teacher now, while training for Olympics)
    Pieter Coetze – turned down an offer from Stanford University, USA to stay and train in SA
    Matt Sates – after one year of slaying it in the US College program, RETURNED to train full time in SA
    Chad le Clos… always been based in SA
    Anyway the list goes on.
    Your point might prove for Tennis, but for swimming? that’s another story

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:32
  193. avatar
    #41 Kaya 85

    @beet (Comment #22)
    I’d be interested to see that top 10 list ….

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:20
  194. avatar
    #40 Deon

    @Tang (Comment #31)
    As far as I can recall, and I may be incorrect, so feel free to correct me, the top rugby/sport schools the past years in your province feature handsomely among the top academic schools, and Pretoria Boys and Girls not so much. Garsfontein, Affies Boys and Affies Girls, Waterkloof, Menlopark, Noordheuwel, Eldoraigne, Helpmekaar and the rest Lesufi so despises.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:18
  195. avatar
    #39 Balikibaba

    @beet (Comment #37)
    One player isn’t going to change the season. But, if a good player is looking for a home, as was said boy, then why not? If it hadn’t been the 2 Old Boys from Bishops, said boy would probably have been scooped up by another rugby playing school in the Cape anyway, as he wanted to be back in the Cape. This is not an unreasonable request from a boy who wants to be closer to home.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:07
  196. avatar
    #38 Balikibaba

    @Grasshopper (Comment #33)
    I have no issue with any school who actively recruits. So, it wasn’t a dig at Glenwood. But this is what I have been told.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:04
  197. avatar
    #37 beet

    @Balikibaba (Comment #28)
    First of all much appreciation to generous old boys and parents and other sponsors. Their contributions are vital in this day and age.
    So many officials/old boys/parents at the schools who acquire players love using the word “opportunity”. It is like that term is part of the recruitment 101 textbook. So good no you for not using it.
    The relationships are meant to be mutually beneficial. The boy should benefit and the school should benefit. This is a reasonable expectation of both parties.
    I would say to anyone strip it down and determine what’s at the very core of this decision to bring in a new player midway through the season.
    Is it to offer him the benefits of an education or to boost the first team?
    Remember this youngster was pursued from the age of 13 because of his rugby ability.

    What would have happened if the best offer on the table was to enrol the youngster and play him in the u19B until the start of the 2025 season?
    The post above questions the principle of bringing in a new player for the first team midseason and whether this will gain traction amongst schools who are struggling and are looking to change their fortunes during the season.
    There is no right or wrong here. Just opinion on what constitutes acceptable practice.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 13:04
  198. avatar
    #36 Deon

    @Tang (Comment #31)
    Which schools put rugby, moreover first team rugby performance, ahead of academics, art, music, drama etc. ? Are there any? I know of none. As far as inclusivity and diversity are concerned, the surest way of killing those two is by an once Afrikaans medium school being forced to adopt Lesufi style English parallel medium or only medium. That is especially true in “low fee paying” schools in lack of a better term. Diversity often ends like Glenvista High did, nogal with the motto Ikusasa Ngelethu, The future is ours . :wink: Currently we have about 3000 schools in SA burned and/or looted annually in SA, so perhaps qualify your statement as high fee paying schools like yours and mine suffer little, except for cases as at your sister school and the hoohaa about discriminatory hair practices and girls with Afro hairstyles insisting on still sitting anywhere in class despite obstructing the view on the blackboard of other learners as one PGHS parent boasted on SM. That kind of diversity you can stick where the sun does not shine. I prefer the Rafentse, Ntando Mahlangu, Nigerian PRG headboy (I think , or prefect) speaking better Afrikaans than me, Damian Willemse , Papier approach.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 12:55
  199. avatar
    #35 Deon

    @kantako (Comment #29)
    Agreed 100%. Would be great if beet could add an upvote/downvote option to comments. Tertiary education can be the best path but it is in general highly overrated as far as universities are concerned and careers trades like plumbing, boilermaking, fitting and turning etc. seem much better options than unspecialised uni qualifications with no career attached to the end of them like B. Com plain etc. All of us who attended traditional rugby schools are familiar with the situation where a boy plays first team and is a big star in a smaller school and joins your school grade 11 or so as to pursue a rugby career by bettering his chances to play CW or SA Schools at the big school and then ends up in the 6th team. Well, competition is much harder after school. Having said that, the internet, online, distance learning and services have made the bubble we live in much bigger. Traveling is not such a major requirement anymore, albeit pleasant in general if not overdone.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 12:22
  200. avatar
    #34 Skywalker

    @Tang (Comment #31)
    I agree with you completely. Like i said, it is a key factor, but should never be the sole factor. Kearsney is still a good school overall, even if their 1st rugby team this year is not winning games, as is Bishops.
    I am saying though that it is a very important cog in the machine, and rugby in South Africa still takes top priority amongst the sporting codes, and with it comes the fanfare and the chance for schools to build pride and bring in large crowds to the school in support.

    NW is the perfect example. The school went through a slump around 10-15 years back. The school still had great teachers and was doing well in certain sports, but their rugby was really struggling and thw whole school was tainted as a result. In 2013 the NW 1st hockey team were No. 1 in SA, and while that was amazing, the Old Boys still cared mostly about how the 1st rugby team did, because thats the main event on Reunion Weekend.It took a lot of work to get the rugby back on track and the effect on the whole school has been positive. It also took a new Headmaster, who to your points above, raised the standards in all areas, from classroom, to manners to outreach programmes etc.

    What I will say also is that a winning brand attracts great talent on its own. A school doesnt always have to rely as much on bursaries when you have parents and kids wanting to come to it in any case.

    Also boys who are good in 1 sport, are generally good in others as well. So good rugby players are often also good cricket or waterpolo players, or good in athletics. Many 1st team cricket boys will often be in the 1st hockey team as well. So what may seem like improving a single sport, also has spin off for other sports invariably, and the standard raises all round.

    Finally, the better the team dos, the more sponsors want to get involved, and parents and Old Boys and that money can also spin off into other facets of the school, so other facilities also get upgraded and given attention.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 11:55
  201. avatar
    #33 Grasshopper

    @Balikibaba (Comment #28)
    Agree with all of your post BUT not sure you can be 100% sure Glenwood actively recruited him? Glenwood have no money for any of that sort of stuff and it’s showing now..

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 11:51
  202. avatar
    #32 Grasshopper

    @Tang (Comment #31)
    Spot on Tang! The amount of underhanded business going on is frightening. Unfortunately the horse has bolted….I see boycotted games coming and then traditional rivals like DHS & Glenwood who have played since 1919 ending…..very sad indeed

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 11:26
  203. avatar
    #31 Tang

    @Skywalker (Comment #21)
    Judging a school based solely on the performance of its first rugby team is generally not advisable, as it provides a very narrow perspective on the school’s overall quality and performance. Here are several reasons why this approach is problematic:

    Academic Achievement: The primary purpose of a school is education. Academic performance, quality of teaching, and student outcomes in exams and further education opportunities should be the main criteria for judging a school.

    Holistic Development: Schools aim to foster well-rounded development in students, including intellectual, social, emotional, and physical growth. Focusing only on sports can overlook other critical aspects like arts, music, drama, and personal development programs.

    Inclusivity and Diversity: A school’s success should also be measured by how well it caters to a diverse student body and supports inclusivity. This includes providing support for students with special educational needs and ensuring equal opportunities for all students.

    Extracurricular Activities: While sports are important, a school should also be judged on the variety and quality of its extracurricular activities. Clubs, societies, and other non-sporting activities contribute significantly to student development.

    Community and Environment: The school environment, including safety, student well-being, and the quality of relationships between staff and students, is crucial. A positive, nurturing environment can significantly impact students’ overall development and happiness.

    Facilities and Resources: Access to adequate facilities and resources for learning, such as libraries, laboratories, and technology, is essential for a high-quality education.

    Parental and Community Engagement: The level of involvement and engagement of parents and the broader community in school activities can reflect the school’s overall health and effectiveness.

    Performance in Other Sports: Even within sports, it’s essential to look at the school’s performance across a range of sports, not just rugby. This provides a more balanced view of the school’s sports program.

    In summary, while the performance of a school’s rugby team can be one of many indicators of the school’s strengths, it should not be the sole or primary criterion for judgment. A comprehensive evaluation of a school should consider academic achievements, extracurricular activities, inclusivity, community involvement, and the overall well-being of its students.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 11:24
  204. avatar
    #30 yesnomaybe

    I feel for Wes, its a tough job in the Western Cape league. Theres no freebie to release pressure beside pre season matches. Milnerton was meant to be the release & they choked at the end of the match, still not sure what went thru the scrummies head. Bishops knew that the 1st side this year were not going to be that great but thought that with good coaching they could get away with it. What adds to this conundrum is that the school is celebrating 175 & they should’ve made a bigger effort to recruit. Not saying its Wes fault but something needed to be done. If nothing changes than Bishops will find themselves in the league of all the Saint schools in Joburg & theres nothing wrong with that. I remember St Stithians being more than decent yesteryear. Sadly Covid spoilt Wes chance to do the Triple Crown & it was Bishops chance to shine as they comfortably beat Paul Roos on the Piley. The days of the 80’s post matric Superstars are over now, another plan is needed if they want to keep up with the Jones.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 11:19
  205. avatar
    #29 kantako

    APOLOGIES FOR THE LONG READ. STILL SHORTER THAN A DEON POST

    @agter_die_pale_pa (Comment #23)
    Thank you for mentioning these sports, that is 100% supporting my argument. Name me one SA swimmer, tennis player, who went to school in SA ? They all went to the US to swimming and tennis academies. Gone are the days where you can focus on school and varsity first and become a professional sportsman after. The field is too competitive.

    As for Gimnastics, Wrestling etc. Even if we do get someone to qualify for the Olympics, they will need to fund themselves. Its shocking, and thats the reason its dying as an extra curricular activity. It has now just become recreational and a hobby.

    Rugby however is a career path, and will only get bigger in years to come. Japan, Russia, USA are only starting to put funds into rugby.

    I have learned one thing since leaving SA a long time ago. We are caught up in a bubble. My parents was born in the same town they currently live in, went to school in that town, put my brothers through school in that town (luckily I was a Bursary kid at a rugby school hahah), my brothers still live and work in that town, and now their kids go to the same primary school. My dad said as soon as you finish school, you go to Varisty and get a job and buy a house etc etc.

    The world has changed. Snotkoppies at 22 years old are making millions on tik tok doing a kak dance. Jake Paul and his brother is youtube millionaires before he gets killed by Tyson. We have to evolve and live in the current situation. The jobs the current kids will be doing might not even exist, so why are we pusing them to get off the devices and into books and study to become lawyers. Get them on youtube and tik tok.

    Same with rugby. We should set the trend as a country, learn from these sports like NFL and football. Get kids into Rugby institutions and make them professionals. Too many kids drop off after school.

    Come on prof @Deon back me up here 😃😃

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 11:18
  206. avatar
    #28 Balikibaba

    I don’t comment here anymore, but I feel the need to say something on this matter.
    To be clear, what I write here is in no way the views of Bishops as a school and I do not speak on behalf of the school either. These are my views.

    Firstly, Theo Garrun has not done his homework properly at all.

    Bishops can be accused of many things, but if there is one thing they cannot be accused of is actively recruiting players. They have zero recruiting campaigns and, unlike other schools, don’t even have a dedicated recruiter scouting kids. I am not saying this is a good thing. But this is fact.

    Here is what I know about this boy in question. ( And how sad that adults feel the need to talk about him – especially with no facts) Said boy is from the Cape. He was ACTIVELY recruited to Rustenburg High School, but was not happy. He was then ACTIVELY recruited to Glenwood, but was homesick and wanted to be in the Cape.

    Two Bishops Old Boys heard about him and are paying for him to go to Bishops. In no way has Bishops offered him ANY bursary. Unlike other schools, Bishops have fallen so far behind, they don’t even currently have a rugby bursary fund. Said boy is having his school fees paid fully by 2 Old Boys. Currently Bishops have no rugby bursary boys in the first team. Zero.

    Said boy, now DOES have the chance to attend one of the top schools in the country. Regardless of his rugby, he will be better off when he leaves in 2 years from now. This should be celebrated instead of condemned as the author of this article seems to want to do.

    It does amaze me that Bishops have attracted this attention over ONE boy (who they haven’t even given a bursary to) but that no one is questioning the ludicrous practice by some schools to start actively recruiting 11 year olds and having 20 to 30 bursary boys per age group. This is where adults have completely lost the plot. And why are we having u13 games streamed where adult men think its clever to be a commentator as if these KIDS are full time professional already. I watched bits and pieces of an u13a game being streamed 2 weeks ago and was flabbergasted that there was even a commentator who knew all the boys’ names! Talk about losing the plot!

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 11:15
  207. avatar
    #27 Tang

    THE PUPILS WERE JUST ALLOWED TO PLAY

    @beet (Comment #8)
    “As a coach I enjoyed the 2021 season the most as there were no spectators allowed at the games and the pupils were just allowed to play.” How important is this statement?
    I don’t agree with the point about fake news or propaganda. Rugby journalists who report on school boy rugby have limited to no information. In general, school boy rugby recruitement is out of control. There are no rules or regulations. Imagine if Theo Garrun conducted an interview, do you think he would get an honest and open answer from any school boy rugby coach about the number of pupils on bursaries or how bursaries are funded? Would he get an open answer on how the pupils were recruited and from where? School boy rugby is in denial. We love to claim it’s all good and wholesome but this is a pretence for a sprialling, professional set up cloaked in secrecy and deceit.
    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 10:51
  208. avatar
    #26 beet

    @OUD ANKER (Comment #14)
    Much respect for Pretoria BH but they are a topic of interest in terms of rugby trying to have a bigger say.
    They are not saying much about it but I have been told that they too have had a change in stance about sports awards.
    Equally interesting is that the former headmaster Tony Reeler seemed pivotal to this moral high ground whilst at Boys’ High.
    Reeler is the current headmaster of Bishops.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 10:31
  209. avatar
    #25 Ploegskaar

    Amateur hour all round. When done correctly and the required protocol is discreetly and diligently followed, this would not end up on SM, in the MSM or in the hands of an old girl’s blouse. Nothing wrong with recruiting, in any grade, but too many without proper knowledge of the craft get involved and leave a stench as far as they go

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 10:30
  210. avatar
    #24 ForeverHorseFly

    I think one just needs to look at High School Football(American) in the USA and we will notice alot of similarities in everything currently being discussed here or in the past.

    The football programs are highly structured and very professional, recruitment is rampant, there’s wealthy boosters funding the school football programs, football crazy supporters/parents/former students etc and this has been the norm for a very very long time.

    I think high school rugby in SA is in the early stages of the same development but it is inevitable for it to be the norm at some point. Once the money in high school rugby reaches critical mass, you will start to see formations of formal regional(or national) leagues, regional championship, national championships etc and you will start seeing divisions(tiers) as well, certain schools playing D1, D2, D3 leagues based off the strength and depth of their respective rugby programs and financial backing.

    Football for those kids like rugby in SA is a potential career and they all dream of the NFL(URC, Springboks) but even if that goal is never reached, a quality education along the way helps alot of those kids, especially those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 10:28
  211. avatar
    #23 agter_die_pale_pa

    @kantako (Comment #15)
    “Let school then be school, focus on academics and netball. Send the rugby boys to rugby academics”

    I think you are missing an important point here. Yes, professional rugby merits professional structures from a young age, which is already available in top rugby schools.

    However, it will be a sad day when playing rugby will only be available to a SA schoolboy through external academies. It has happened to many sports, gymnastics, wrestling, swimming, even tennis in rural areas. Surely there is a place for rugby as recreation, even with a healthy dose of competitiveness, for the average boy in South Africa.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 10:26
  212. avatar
    #22 beet

    @Wyvern (Comment #16)
    It might be ideal but I don’t think it can go this way in SA. Rugby has to latch itself onto schools to remain meaningful at these development age group levels in SA. There is a good relationship for the most part but one can see there are areas where how rugby goes about its business is does not support the school ethos entirely.

    Also rugby is power hungry. I think I could come up with a top 10 list of rugby departments who would dearly like to replace their existing headmasters with someone who shows rugby more favour. If it was possible to lobby for state school headmasters to be on fixed term contracts, they would go all out to have this change brought about. :mrgreen: Getting this right would be a massive step towards having proper rugby academies in schools – where a boy goes to become a rugby player first and an academic student second.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 10:21
  213. avatar
    #21 Skywalker

    The reality is that your 1st rugby team is key to the overall image of a school. End of story. Bishops, like Hilton and now Michaelhouse or DHS have done, can be proactive and drive some investment to aid with recuitment and this will be resolved.

    The reality is that people want to be associated with a winning brand. Sport results get published and spoken about each week, and the rugby games are the main event. This is where the school come out and does its warcries and the parents and Old Boys come to support. I dont see any war cry practice happening in cricket season. The better the team does, the better the support and the sentiment of the school. More old boys come to games, more get involved, more speak favourably around the braai’s, more invest and so the wheel turns.

    Ask the Kearsney parents or boys right now how proud they feel to arrive each Saturday in their supprters kit and watch their 1st team lose their 8th game in a row. Its demoralising and it is a knock to them all. The overall school is seem to be ‘slipping’ and the school’s image takes a knock.

    NW went through this exact thing. Glenwood going through it now as well. Its hard to climb back out – even if other sports or academics are still good/the same. When you lose the crowd, its hard to get it back.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 10:21
  214. avatar
    #20 Tang

    @OUD ANKER (Comment #14)
    100%

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 10:18
  215. avatar
    #19 agter_die_pale_pa

    @Wyvern (Comment #16)
    I think they are already, and available as options for kantako’s young golf-like prodigies. It is not coincidence that you can pretty much name the top 10 rugby-schools at the start of every year. Special boys go to these schools because they have serious ambitions of becoming a professional rugby player. It works out for many of them, and SA benefits through winning world cups.

    For me the risk lies in the rest of the schools, trying to become overnight what these institutions have been building systematically over many decades. It is possible perhaps, but it comes at a price, both monetary and culturally. And it is extremely hard to keep it going…

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 10:14
  216. avatar
    #18 Tang

    BUT A BIG CHEQUE BOOK IS A BIG HELP!

    @gimmie (Comment #1)
    Whilst I agree with your general sentiment. A Big cheque book is a big help. Three to four rugby bursaries a year will hardly make you competitive. I think the number is probably six to eight per year. GIM have an excellent recruitment department and some of the finest rugby playing primary schools in South Africa as feeders. Imagine how difficult it is to recruit talent in the Southern Suburbs.
    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 10:13
  217. avatar
    #17 Skywalker

    @kantako (Comment #15)
    Very interesting idea. Definitely some merit there as a big change up to current status quo.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 10:12
  218. avatar
    #16 Wyvern

    @kantako (Comment #15)
    I think it inevitably will go this way (rightfully or wrongfully so) but I don’t think these academies will be standalone academies, they’ll be embedded within the schools….

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 09:56
  219. avatar
    #15 kantako

    DISAGREE

    @Grasshopper we will always be 20 years behind football/soccer,tennis, golf, Ice Hockey, NBA, NFL etc if we keep thinking like that.

    Its time we realise we are the dominant rugby country in te world, 4 World Cups. Rugby is a career. Its not a hobby anymore. Big money can be earned, and sadly not half of the salaries than above mentioned sports.

    Why is it ok to take a 14 year old boy out of school and enroll him in a golf school? Or send a 14 year old girl to the IMG tennis academy in USA, but rugby has to be a hobby at school and schools must devide sponsors, bursaries etc accross the board ?

    If Rugby is the way for our sports stars to make it on the big scene then we should back it and go all in.

    I would love to see the Old boys, Ruperts, Musks, Kolisis, name them. Open up Rugby academies. Let school then be school, focus on academics and netball. Send the rugby boys to rugby academies.
    Parents still pay normal school fees at the acdemy, there are a few specialist teachers and they “home school” but they focus on becoming rugby players.

    Open up one in each province, and then we have 9 academies playing in a league from U14 to U19. The best of the best. Play home and away and thats the season. 16 games. QUARTER, SEMI, FINAL.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 09:47
  220. avatar
    #14 OUD ANKER

    @agter_die_pale_pa (Comment #11)
    Pretoria Boys High most probably one of the best examples of what you just explained. Rugby is not the be all and end all….not because of rugby but despite rugby PBHS remains one of the top schools in all facets of education in the country.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 09:41
  221. avatar
    #13 Wyvern

    @Grasshopper (Comment #12)
    Don’t Bishops have 700+ boys from Gr8? Sounds like a reasonable size to me. My understanding is that they’re one of (if not) the biggest all boys private school in sa.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 09:35
  222. avatar
    #12 Grasshopper

    @beet (Comment #10)
    And Bishops are a very expensive private school with low numbers participating in arguably the toughest schoolboy league in the world. They are primarily an education focused school doing high end Cambridge etc exams. They won’t have the numbers & depth to compete. A St John’s, Kearsney, Hilton, Clifton, Michaelhouse are better matched schools…but too far away…

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 09:26
  223. avatar
    #11 agter_die_pale_pa

    @Smallies (Comment #4)
    Fully agree. All sports and disciplines should benefit from financial means to develop kids with special talents. Unfortunately in rugby-crazy SA this is overlooked often by “non-traditional rugby schools”, with “rugby is the best marketing tool” as argument. Yes, rugby is very important in SA, but I always say that a school needs to be prepared to sacrifice to a certain extent in order to become a top 20 rugby school (I am not referring to traditional powerhouses, I am referring to a top 50 school wanting to challenge them).

    Luckily it is not difficult to know where a school stands in this regard when choosing a high school. For some a rugby-mad school is perfect, for others rugby is one of many participation opportunities offered by the school. SBR have evolved and I think it has become an “either-or” situation for many schools.

    The challenges is for old boys, parents and learners not to then make too big a fuss about rankings and historic win/loss-ratios, if rugby is solely played for fun, and by the boys who chose to be there without strings attached.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 09:17
  224. avatar
    #10 beet

    Just my personal view is that Wes is a top top coach. A big asset for Bishops. You see the high level of technical coaching it in the way Bishops plays rugby.

    My dealings with school coaches leads me to believe that the best ones are those who can relay their rugby knowledge and wants to their players in an understandable form and introduce higher sophistication through this. Attention to detail, good work ethic, the ability to work well with colleagues and a good understanding of how kids’ minds work and how to extract the best out of different personalities all play big roles in being a success as a coach.
    Obviously SBR also teaches us that being a successful coach and obtaining good scoreboard results don’t always go hand-in-hand. Equally fortunate is that there is a massive amount of technical expertise in coaching and generally the ability to assess coaches on a lot more than just results is alive and well.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 09:15
  225. avatar
    #9 Grasshopper

    @beet (Comment #8)
    Very defensive…….

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 09:15
  226. avatar
    #8 beet

    Wes’ blog post:

    Morning Theo, Wes Chetty here, just had your article sent to me. Which I find quite astounding, “your two cents”. Please allow me to share some facts with you as well as enlighten you to what has happened. You are basing your article off of a voicenote from an old boys group (which unfortunately did not take place, which I can confirm with actual evidence). You then unfortunately claim, that I the coach am abandoning the players which again is a sad statement having coached the team for the greater part of 11 years, having had tough years before. We have recently had a young man join our school who is a fantastic young man, who we pursued from the age of 13. He decided to head to another school. About a a month ago we were informed that he returned to his home town of Grabouw due to him having issues at previous school, we then followed process and contacted Glenwood and brought him across as he had not been at school for one month. As a coach I enjoyed the 2021 season the most as there were no spectators allowed at games and the pupils were just allowed to play. In terms of the voicenote, my father probably had the best response “opinions are like arseholes, everyone has one”, please in future before posting articles like this in which you damn a coach (who you a right is not an educator, but was one of those bursaries Bishops handed out in 2006, which then allowed him to go on and get a University Education an MBA in fact) make sure that your content is not fake news or propaganda which you wish to spread. I am always happy to do any interview that is Rugby based.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 09:04
  227. avatar
    #7 Grasshopper

    Further into gutter schools rugby goes. Recruitment/ Poaching/Sponsorships/TV & Streaming, all just wrong. These are kids! Let’s not even start on supplements & things a little stronger than that. Out of control! Currie Cup dying, the focus should be club rugby & u20s not school level. The base or depth of the sport will die if it’s focused on the elite. Late developers are missed & lost….

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 08:39
  228. avatar
    #6 Grant

    I see the coach of said school had some choice words for Mr Garrun on his blog in response to his post. Not a happy chappy.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 08:25
  229. avatar
    #5 Kaya 85

    No in-season transfer! No way, Not right. Not for the kid who is not meant to be a mercenary, not for the incumbent players, not for opposing teams. And the school tarnishes itself. 3 schools in one season? c’mon, no.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 07:50
  230. avatar
    #4 Smallies

    Scouting kids is a tricky business, get it right and it will contribute to the school,get it wrong and it can destroy a school.
    If you give bursaries it should also be over the whole spectrum of the school.you cant give bursaries for rugby and neglect say tennis and cricket,very important to also accommodate academically bright learners in this program….so in short if you give to rugby only you are doing it wrong,you should have some academic guidelines for all bursaries also

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 07:27
  231. avatar
    #3 yesnomaybe

    @gimmie (Comment #1)
    I disagree with ur assumption, we played Bishops in that era, 80’s upwards from U9 level & can’t remember losing to many matches to them until 1st team level when all of a sudden 19 year old SA & WP schools players from around the country would be playing for them. English/ Afrikaans it didnt matter. What I don’t understand is seeing some of those names on the honours board at the pub at the Piley & claiming them to be Bishops Old Boys. Yes the rugby at all age groups was slightly better than it currently is but unfortunately for them, 2 words that do not mix is wealth & toughness. Yes Im generalising, however, as some famous boxer said, its difficult to get up early in the morning to go for a run when u wearing silk pyjamas. If it wasnt for their post matrics who were not only a year older than everyone else & were established & great schoolboy rugby players then they would’ve lost to most of the Big schools. Funny how the current coach, claim to fame, was that he was the last post matric at Bishops for rugby.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 07:04
  232. avatar
    #2 Wyvern

    @gimmie (Comment #1)
    Given the size of Bishops as a private school, I tend to agree with you.

    ReplyReply
    14 May, 2024 at 06:25
  233. avatar
    #1 gimmie

    buying players mid-season is not sustainable and will destroy the program even further. What message does it send to the kid that is being replaced. The rugby programs at Bishops prep and wet pups, the two feeder schools, are abysmal. I have seen it first hand. That is where Bishops should start their efforts. Look at what SACS junior is achieving. It unfortunately takes much more than a cheque book to create a successful rugby program. It all starts with a proper plan/strategy and the right people in charge. In Wes Chetty and Robbie Fleck Bishops have two gems, invest in a proper coaching structure bottom up, and 3 or 4 bursaries per age group, focusing on transformation which is required in any event. Stop finding excuses and focus on implementing a proper strategy. Some of the best rugby schools globally are private schools, no reason why Bishops can’t consistently be a top 10 team. Between 1978 and 1994 Bishops was the only school that had a positive win ratio against Gim. And it was not because of post matrics it was because of a proper rugby program.

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    13 May, 2024 at 23:36

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