South Africa’s rugby’s premier domestic tournament, the Currie Cup kicks off this week with the tournament being watered down this year due to endless changes to its format.
The Currie Cup was once the crown jewel in the South African rugby calendar and the format of the competition has been changed multiple times in recent years.
The oversupply of rugby paired with the constant format changes and the vast majority of Springboks and Super Rugby players not participating in the competition - it’s little wonder the tournament receives limited attention.
SA Rugby has created a single-round format they hope will take the competition back to its former glory.
Here is what a some of the players had to say about the about the change at the tournament's launch yesterday.
S’BU NKOSI (SHARKS)
No, I don’t have a problem with it. I think it makes it exciting. The format is such a way that two matches in, it already feels like you’re involved in a playoff. Everybody has something to lose if they don’t perform on the day and they can lose it quickly.
I think we’re going to see a lot of high tempo rugby and also have teams that are more focused more immediately. You’ve only got one chance against one team.
ANDRIES COETZEE (LIONS)
Obviously I haven’t experienced it yet but I’m quite excited for it. I think it might actually keep the fans more invested in the competition.
What I mean by that is that it will probably make it easier for them to follow what’s going on. You’re not going to wait until the second round of fixtures for fans to suddenly start wondering how their side is performing. I think it might just be the perfect format.
EW VILJOEN (WESTERN PROVINCE)
I can’t say I favour the format because I haven’t played it yet. But it’s definitely something I’m looking forward to. Can I give an answer at the end of the season? (laughs)
Look, I think it’s exciting and means all the teams will have to be sharp from the outset.
The tournament kicks off on Friday, when the Pumas and Griquas meet in Mbombela before the Cheetahs and Blue Bulls lock horns.
Story via: The Citizen