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Sharks sweating on futures of Sprinbok duo2 minutes read

South African 2019 Rugby World Cup heroes and Sharks team-mates, Makazole Mapimpi and Lukhanyo Am could move abroad

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Springbok 2019 Rugby World Cup heroes and Sharks team-mates, Makazole Mapimpi and Lukhanyo Am are the latest high-profile South African stars linked with moves abroad.

The 29-year-old Mapimpi, who became the first South African to score a try in a World Cup final on November 2 last year, has received an offer from a Japanese club.

Am, meanwhile is understood to have sparked interest from clubs in both England and France. The Sharks are now sweating as they look to hold onto two of their biggest assets.

Of the 33 players who were part of the Springboks’ 2019 Rugby World Cup-winning squad in Japan, just 14 (42%) remain based in the country after the exodus abroad that transpired at the end of 2019.

The sudden spike in interest from overseas clubs in South African players stems from a 21-day window that was agreed upon by the SA Rugby Industry, MyPlayers and the South African Rugby Employers’ Organisation (SAREO) in which all professional players were given three weeks – until 14 May – to get out of their current contracts with their respective unions.

It all forms part of SA Rugby’s attempt at cutting costs across the board in an effort to save up to R1 billion by the end of the year as the economic impact of the coronavirus becomes more severe with each passing week.

In Cape Town, there have been no new developments since reports linked star player Pieter-Steph du Toit to a mega money move to French club Montpellier. Du Toit, 27, was heavily linked with a move to Harlequins late last year but reports emerged that French Top 14 giants Montpellier may be preparing to make the star forward the highest paid player in the game.

According to the Rapport newspaper, the French club have offered Du Toit a three-year deal worth a staggering €100 000 (R2 087 000) per month.

To make matters worse, the clause stipulates that franchises cannot negotiate with their players during this time, so there can be no counteroffering once the players and their agents receive an offer from abroad.

The Sharks’ worries do not stop with Am and Mapimpi, either. Flyhalf Curwin Bosch has sparked interest from English club Bath while prop Thomas du Toit has been linked with French clubs Toulon and Racing Metro. Lock JJ van der Mescht, meanwhile is understood to have been contacted by French club Stade Francais.

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Southern Africa Sports

New date announced for Nedbank Golf Challenge

The European Tour has rescheduled the Nedbank Golf Challenge for December at the Gary Player Country Club in Sun City South Africa

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The European Tour has rescheduled the Nedbank Golf Challenge at the Gary Player Country Club in Sun City South Africa from 3rd-6th December.

According to the organizers, the tournament‚ which is one of four rescheduled Rolex Series events‚ will remain as the penultimate event of the European Tour season. Regarded as “Africa’s Major”, it will be followed by the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai which will take place between December 10-13 at Jumeirah Golf Estates, where the 2020 Race to Dubai champion was set to be crowned.

The change in date now means the Nedbank Golf Challenge returns to its former spot on the calendar.

“I am so excited that a date has been set‚” tournament host Gary Player said in a statement. “It’s one of South Africa’s favourite sporting events. I’m sure the public will be as elated as I am.”

“The tournament does so much good for tourism and advertising our beautiful country. I’m eternally grateful for the European Tour and all our sponsors involved.”

Following the suspension of the season on March 8, the European Tour was set for a return to action behind closed doors in July, with a new UK Swing involving six tournaments being played in July and August. All European Tour tournaments will be subject to stringent safety and testing protocols.

Chief Executive of Nedbank Group, Mike Brown, said: “Despite the unprecedented challenges that we are currently facing in overcoming the Covid-19 pandemic, we trust the 40th anniversary of the Nedbank Golf Challenge – now back in its early December timeslot – will give millions of South Africans and sports fans around the world something very special to look forward to.

Our brand has become synonymous with ‘Africa’s Major’, a showcase of our country to the world and a household name in the world of golf having played host to the world’s leading golfers. As Nelson Mandela reminded us – Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does.”

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Southern Africa Sports

Zimbabwe FA rules out pay cut for national team coach

Zimbabwe FA say Zdravko Logarusic will not be asked to take a pay cut despite the crippling effect of the coronavirus pandemic

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Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) president Felton Kamambo has revealed that national team coach Zdravko Logarusic will not be asked to take a pay cut despite the crippling effect of the coronavirus pandemic.

ZIFA says they are still in a comfortable financial position to meet Logarusics’ monthly salary as per contract. Less than a month after he took over as the Warriors coach, football in the country went into lockdown.

Logarusic had earlier said he does not feel comfortable receiving his salary when he has not worked for it and wants international football to resume very soon.

Kamambo said the contract with expatriates should not be affected by footballs inactivity, but says it will be discussed when the board have their meeting.

The ZIFA president does not expect drastic decisions to be taken regarding Logarusic’s salary.

“We did our plan before hiring him so we will continue to pay our coach according to our contract. I am not expecting the board to make drastic charges on that.

“We are happy that for the first time the association is able to meet their financial obligations regarding the coach’s welfare. We don’t owe him any cent. We also don’t owe any of our staff members any money. ZIFA had gained notoriety for not paying coaches and at one time it even cost us a run in the World Cup qualifiers. But those are now things of the past. We have opened a new leaf as the association,” said Kamambo.

Kamambo also said ZIFA is trying to be transparent with its finances.

“We already have US$500 000 for the remaining six months. But we will not just spend because it was availed us a bit early. We will continue to operate the way we were doing so that by the time football returns we will be prepared to cater for all the national teams that have competitions that are currently on hold.

“We cannot have a situation where ZIFA are known as crybabies, seeking for resources at the eleventh hour every time. We have to (make a) budget and stick to that. So, the money we received will go to usual operations which include national teams travel, junior leagues as well as staff,” Kamambo said.

The ZIFA president said the COVID-19 relief package they requested from FIFA will be used to assist their affiliates.

“When the money comes, we will assist all our football affiliates. We will have a board meeting in two weeks’ time which will address all these issues related to the coronavirus and its effects on our game.”

ZIFA have provided $2 000 to each elite referee to help during these trying times, according to Kamambo, the funds were from savings in the organizations coffers in the first half of the year.

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Mogodi elected to Cricket South Africa board

The Council of Cricket South Africa have elected John Mogodi as a non-independent director to the Board of the CSA

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The Council of Cricket South Africa (CSA) has elected John Mogodi as a non-independent director to the Board of the CSA.

Mr. Mogodi is the president and chairman of the Board of Limpopo Impala Cricket.

“I am delighted to welcome Mogodi to the Board of CSA,” commented CSA Board chairperson Chris Nenzani.

“He has already made an important contribution to various Board sub-committees and he is highly experienced in the areas of cricket administration as well as financial and audit management.”

Mogodi fills the vacancy caused by the resignation of Jack Madiseng in December last year. Madiseng became the fourth member of Cricket South Africa’s Board of Directors and the first non-independent director to resign following the resignations of independent members; Shirley Zinn, Mohammed Iqbal Khan and Dawn Mokhobo.

In November 2019, Madiseng had written a letter to Cricket SA president Chris Nenzani and the body’s vice-president Beresford Williams in which he rebuked the pair for their failure to take responsibility for CSA’s woes and for leaving former CEO Thabang Moroe to take – as Madiseng put it – all the “klaps,” from the public and the players union, the SA Cricketers Association.

Mogodi is a qualified accountant from Pretoria University and served as a senior accountant at KPMG for three years before taking up his present position of accountant and project manager at Ditsie Financial Consultants. He serves on the Board of numerous companies and is currently a member of both the Audit and Risk Committee and the Finance and Commercial Committee of CSA.

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