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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 2:47 pm 
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I have seen this coming a long way.

http://sacsrugby.com/more-spectators-th ... r-schools/

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More spectators than Super Rugby too much for schools’?
I read somewhere recently about schools’ rugby is getting more spectator’s than some Super Rugby games. One just has to think about the famous Paarl Boys’ versus Paarl Gim game in August where they attract close to 30 000 spectators. Local southern suburbs derbies in the Cape attract between 5ooo and 8ooo spectators! Then there are the other big schools’ derbies all over South Africa which attract massive crowds. Games are being streamed live via Youtube thanks to SchoolSports Live and now Digitv. Along with this comes the Super Sport coverage of games too. Who can blame spectators? Entertaining rugby, passionate crowds and boys playing an attractive style of rugby.

What will this do for the schools? I can only imagine that from a sponsorship and marketing standpoint, it will mean more money for the schools in sponsorship agreements surely? This is good for schools one would think? I think this will mean more scholarships on offer, coaching employment opportunities and better equipment for schools. But this adds a new dimension to schoolboy rugby. Are schools losing focus one why boys are at school? But how does one not get left behind if you do not embrace this new found wealth coming the way of top rugby schools. It certainly has created opportunities for good or potential players to get scholarships to attend the better schools and gather exposure onto the rugby scene. More and more rugby blogs are appearing, offering opinions, coaching and ranking systems (which all vary in their formulas). These websites are designed to have an online presence to make money surely? There are some very useful websites out their like www.stoopstats.co.za, www.rugby365.com, www.ruggas.co.za, www.schoolboyrugby.co.za and others. I must say, people can get very worked up over a schools’ rugby game and fall hook line and sinker into being baited into a very entertaining amount of comments. All whilst earning the hosting author “pay per clicks”.



If one looks back at an article written three years ago about two top boys’ schools not wanting to play each other due to aggressive poaching and recruitment strategies, schools are now having to be careful about poaching from feeder schools and definitely from taking boys from halfway through their high school careers. Now when you really dig deep, you find the mother unions are the ones funding some of these boys through their remaining school years with a promise of playing for their Union teams. A lot has happened in three years and schools are scrambling around already at U12 festivals now looking for players, employing recruitment officers to do this job. This has all been made possible by sponsorship money, Old Boys’ donations and parents wanting their sons’ team to be the best. Headmaster’s have been caught in the middle of all of this and this has added another dimension to their leadership of a school. Parents now approach schools with rugby CVs knowing they have an human asset worth a financial gain at their disposal. I apologise if that sounds crued, but that really happens. Parents now negotiate scholarships between the various schools seeing who will offer the best package. Coaches, who traditionally are the teachers at the school, are also now changing. More outside coaches are being employed by schools, along with conditioning coaches, physio’s, video analysts and mental coaches. Schools are trying to keep the teachers as coaches, but pressure from sponsors and parents for results adds more pressure to Headmaster’s mounting workload.

What is the solution? I can see a few options playing out here:

We move to a system like the USA where recruitment becomes a massive business and the child the commodity. Not that we will have drafts per say, but definitely junior schools will have recruitment officers at their rugby matches and approaching parents with their offerings. This happens already, but I think will become more prevalent. The better known rugby schools will play themselves into their own National league as competition for good games become scarce in their province. They will play less games, but travel more in South Africa. One does have to wonder about the academic priority here, just in case we lost focus on why our boys attend school? But these boys are seeing rugby as a profession.

I enjoyed a talk by Gary Kirsten on the amount of players that make a sport a money earning career, as he does a great demonstration by asking the audience to participate in a quick survey of how many in the audience made money from sport. If you hear he is talking near you, do yourself a favour and attend this talk for some perspective.

Already schools were approached a few years ago to enter in a Monday Night League similar to Varsity Cup. This would mean that about 20 schools would not see their 1stXV squad play on a Saturday morning or afternoon as they were preparing to travel all over South Africa to play in this league. Not sure how much support Headmaster’s gave this venture, but it did not get off the ground and I personally hope it doesn’t as it will seriously harms schools’ rugby. Can you imagine the “rockstar” status these boys would now have around the passage ways of their school?

Another scenario would be that Schools’ Governing Bodies, along with the Heads of the schools, decide that we will do our best with some recruitment, with funds that are available for scholarships to attempt to get the person who wants a more balanced education and offering. These schools won’t be able to compete with the schools who may be in the bracket played out above, but will be competitve against schools in a similar position. When they do play the schools portrayed above, scores will be completely one sided. The reason for this is that schools that will go on massive recruitment drive because they now have the funds to do so, end up with usually 2 or 3 players for one position. This means that little Jonny could be playing in the U14C side against effectively a Craven Week U13 prop or flyhalf from another Provence, but still a very good player.

The next scenario will be when schools will offer a sport as an extra mural and will play in a lower league and focus on being an all round school encouraging boys or girls to take part in as much as they can, remembering that education is the most important.

So where does that leave many schools now? Headmaster’s of traditional boys’ schools and the top rugby playing co-ed schools will need to consider the implications of not joining the race to be one the best rugby playing schools. As this is certainly a marketing tool to attract players. I am sure these discussions around the Saturday braai have being going on for years and will for many more.

I am looking forward to the 2018 season and spending my Saturday mornings roaming the rugby field watching entertaining schoolboy rugby. No matter what team is playing, let the boys play, the referee ref and the coaches coach. Just enjoy!


Barry van Selm


Where is our rugby heading?

Rondebosch beating Napier Boys High.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:05 pm 
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I love working with teens and take my rugby seriously, but am nowhere close to wanting to be in that kind of environment. I turned down a uni position once because the focus was more on recruiting athletes for the team than promoting the academic programs. I know quite a few people to chose / switched school for sport and ended up wasting a lot of money chasing the sport dream and not getting a degree (or switching into something more useful once they gave up on sport or finished and realised they couldn't get a job with what they had).

Even worse that this is happening to schoolboys. Systems, be in schools like this or academies, only promote the success stories and tend not to talk about those who weren't, though it would help them build a more effective, well-rounded system.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:42 pm 
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Very wise words from you.

Rugby is a cultural thing. Schools rugby in SA is huge. If you want to be a top dog (which obvious attrack new pupils), you need to do something extra compare to the rest.

Our top school scout 40 provincial u13 players yearly. They are unbeaten in 50+ matches vs SA opposition. Their coach earn enough to pick and choose next level. The Lions can afford him.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:45 pm 
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Sounds like football, signing pre-teens on the incredible off-chance that they find a Messi. It'll never happen, but I wonder if the same proportions of talent would emerge if there were no academies and it was just up to schools and clubs to develop players?

Speaking of South African schoolboys ... this study might interest you.

https://www.ajol.info/index.php/sasma/a ... 4440/65070


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 4:03 pm 
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It's true. We get huge turnouts at school sports. And it's lots of fun usually ending up at one of the parents home for drinks etc. I love it. Have attended loads of school sports this year and not a single SR game


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 4:23 pm 
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Sards wrote:
It's true. We get huge turnouts at school sports.


It's free ;)


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 5:23 pm 
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Sandstorm wrote:
Sards wrote:
It's true. We get huge turnouts at school sports.


It's free ;)


Where do you watch school sport ?

Entrance may be free yes but the rest sets you back a bit.
Not that I am complaining.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 6:27 pm 
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Wait until you grandsons play decent rugby. You just MIGHT accept the accumulated cost plus interest over the years ...


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 6:48 pm 
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Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Wait until you grandsons play decent rugby. You just MIGHT accept the accumulated cost plus interest over the years ...


Can't wait.....but am getting too old to handle the social side...


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:26 pm 
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Sards wrote:
Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Wait until you grandsons play decent rugby. You just MIGHT accept the accumulated cost plus interest over the years ...


Can't wait.....but am getting too old to handle the social side...


:lol:

I am the hermit Grandpa - come in, occupy a seat in grumpy silence, watch the game (with a cruel grin at well executed tackles) , toss the lads a few bucks for colas, and sod off.

They all seem intimidated ...


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:45 pm 
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Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Sards wrote:
Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Wait until you grandsons play decent rugby. You just MIGHT accept the accumulated cost plus interest over the years ...


Can't wait.....but am getting too old to handle the social side...


:lol:

I am the hermit Grandpa - come in, occupy a seat in grumpy silence, watch the game (with a cruel grin at well executed tackles) , toss the lads a few bucks for colas, and sod off.

They all seem intimidated ...


A wife 15 years younger does that to you. The social side. Me I feel like you do...


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:56 pm 
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:lol:

Grandma knows her rugby - and me. She comes in separately, go sit with the family, and do the decent social things. She knows to leave me be ...


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:01 pm 
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Wilson's Toffee wrote:
:lol:

Grandma knows her rugby - and me. She comes in separately, go sit with the family, and do the decent social things. She knows to leave me be ...


;)


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:29 pm 
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Sards wrote:
Sandstorm wrote:
Sards wrote:
It's true. We get huge turnouts at school sports.


It's free ;)


Where do you watch school sport ?

Entrance may be free yes but the rest sets you back a bit.
Not that I am complaining.

You'll pay entrance fees at all our high schools.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:43 pm 
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Nieghorn wrote:
Sounds like football, signing pre-teens on the incredible off-chance that they find a Messi. It'll never happen, but I wonder if the same proportions of talent would emerge if there were no academies and it was just up to schools and clubs to develop players?

Speaking of South African schoolboys ... this study might interest you.

https://www.ajol.info/index.php/sasma/a ... 4440/65070

Thanks for that. Like I said in SA its a cultural thing. The big schools dont just play rugby against each other, Paul Roos interschools program vs Grey High:
Friday:
Golf (18)
Cross Country (8)
Chess (7)
Hockey (14ABCD, 16AB, 19AB)
Tennis 19A & 19B
Debating (1 x Jnr Team & 1 x Snr Team)
Mountainbiking (9)
Squash 16A & 19A (6 per team)
Surfing (6)
Saturday:
Rugby: 19BCDEFG, 16ABCE, 15ABCE, 14ABCE
Hockey: 16CDE, 19CDE

The nice thing is that the hosts parents will give accommodation to their opponents. This way life friendships are made and you'll usually find that the u14 A players from both schools will host each other in PE.

All teams have to attend the main rugby game on the saturday. Now if you add the families of all the sport teams plus players plus old boys , you can fill a stadium with ease.

The 1st team rugby result will decide the interschools winner.

http://www.paulroos.co.za/prg-vs-grey-h ... pril-2018/

"PRG-seuns moet in “step-outs” geklee wees tydens Vrydag se uitplasing. "

Step outs is like the army step outs.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:58 pm 
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Nieghorn wrote:
I love working with teens and take my rugby seriously, but am nowhere close to wanting to be in that kind of environment. I turned down a uni position once because the focus was more on recruiting athletes for the team than promoting the academic programs. I know quite a few people to chose / switched school for sport and ended up wasting a lot of money chasing the sport dream and not getting a degree (or switching into something more useful once they gave up on sport or finished and realised they couldn't get a job with what they had).


You'd hate small private colleges here then. Offering 18-year-olds the opportunity to continue their sports careers is the only thing keeping the doors open for some small colleges.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 2:47 am 
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OomPB wrote:
I have seen this coming a long way.

http://sacsrugby.com/more-spectators-th ... r-schools/


Where is our rugby heading?

Rondebosch beating Napier Boys High.

You're lucky we didn't send Hastings Boys. ;)


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:57 am 
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Prefer school's rugby as well. The atmosphere is much less artificial. No sideshows, just good clean rugby.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:58 am 
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UncleFB wrote:
OomPB wrote:
I have seen this coming a long way.

http://sacsrugby.com/more-spectators-th ... r-schools/


Where is our rugby heading?

Rondebosch beating Napier Boys High.

You're lucky we didn't send Hastings Boys. ;)


Would pay money to see them play Paarl Gim or Grey.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:59 am 
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Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Wait until you grandsons play decent rugby. You just MIGHT accept the accumulated cost plus interest over the years ...

They charge an entry fee at Bokkieweek?


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 8:05 am 
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Bloutoria wrote:
Prefer school's rugby as well. The atmosphere is much less artificial. No sideshows, just good clean rugby.

How is your son going?


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 8:17 am 
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Big Nipper wrote:
Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Wait until you grandsons play decent rugby. You just MIGHT accept the accumulated cost plus interest over the years ...

They charge an entry fee at Bokkieweek?



They have to have some way of keeping out undesirable elements, like you.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:05 am 
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Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Big Nipper wrote:
Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Wait until you grandsons play decent rugby. You just MIGHT accept the accumulated cost plus interest over the years ...

They charge an entry fee at Bokkieweek?



They have to have some way of keeping out undesirable elements, like you.


But he gets in free on his students pass


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:37 am 
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Sards wrote:
Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Big Nipper wrote:
Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Wait until you grandsons play decent rugby. You just MIGHT accept the accumulated cost plus interest over the years ...

They charge an entry fee at Bokkieweek?



They have to have some way of keeping out undesirable elements, like you.


But he gets in free on his students pass




Not at Bokkieweek. Those people look after their children, know who to let pass and who to block ....


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:47 am 
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Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Sards wrote:
Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Big Nipper wrote:
Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Wait until you grandsons play decent rugby. You just MIGHT accept the accumulated cost plus interest over the years ...

They charge an entry fee at Bokkieweek?



They have to have some way of keeping out undesirable elements, like you.


But he gets in free on his students pass




Not at Bokkieweek. Those people look after their children, know who to let pass and who to block ....

Ja I am sure they had tons of practice with the Dompas system


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:47 am 
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OomPB wrote:
Bloutoria wrote:
Prefer school's rugby as well. The atmosphere is much less artificial. No sideshows, just good clean rugby.

How is your son going?

Not well :(( He is falling behind size-wise, and we know how important that is considered in rugby.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:51 am 
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Big Nipper wrote:
Ja I am sure they had tons of practice with the Dompas system



:lol:

:thumbup:


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:54 am 
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Bloutoria wrote:
OomPB wrote:
Bloutoria wrote:
Prefer school's rugby as well. The atmosphere is much less artificial. No sideshows, just good clean rugby.

How is your son going?

Not well :(( He is falling behind size-wise, and we know how important that is considered in rugby.

What age is he? If I may ask.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:57 am 
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Sadly my son is not doing rugby this year ..... rather doing hockey.
We overdid the cricket with him last term....he really had very little time to himself.
They keep asking him to play because he is perfect prop material , but the school sport at his school is so pathetic
I really dont care much and prefer him to play club in his sport. And the club doesnt offer rugby because of the water situation
and the damage rugby does to the fields.

So its hockey and guitar.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:58 am 
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Average Joe wrote:
Bloutoria wrote:
OomPB wrote:
Bloutoria wrote:
Prefer school's rugby as well. The atmosphere is much less artificial. No sideshows, just good clean rugby.

How is your son going?

Not well :(( He is falling behind size-wise, and we know how important that is considered in rugby.

What age is he? If I may ask.

He's 14 years, in Grade 8. Second smallest guy on the field, plays 6. The brutes smash him off the rucks, mostly he still has the ball in hand ;) Het takes a bit of a hammering though, starting to wear him down.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:05 am 
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Bloutoria wrote:
He's 14 years, in Grade 8. Second smallest guy on the field, plays 6. The brutes smash him off the rucks, mostly he still has the ball in hand ;) Het takes a bit of a hammering though, starting to wear him down.


See if he can move to scrumhalf. Close enough to play, but other guys can carry the ball.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:07 am 
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Wilson's Toffee wrote:
Bloutoria wrote:
He's 14 years, in Grade 8. Second smallest guy on the field, plays 6. The brutes smash him off the rucks, mostly he still has the ball in hand ;) Het takes a bit of a hammering though, starting to wear him down.


See if he can move to scrumhalf. Close enough to play, but other guys can carry the ball.


Sometimes a break does the world of good.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:17 am 
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OomPB wrote:
Sards wrote:
Sandstorm wrote:
Sards wrote:
It's true. We get huge turnouts at school sports.


It's free ;)


Where do you watch school sport ?

Entrance may be free yes but the rest sets you back a bit.
Not that I am complaining.

You'll pay entrance fees at all our high schools.

Nope. You wont pay entrance at any of the schools in the Southern Suburbs. When my son was playing and we would travel all the way to schools in the Boland only to be charged to get into the ground used to irritate me. Making money off visiting schools parents is pretty poor form.

That article by Barry has some serious warnings for SA Schools rugby. There is every chance of killing the goose that lays the golden egg. But selfishness and putting the schools name ahead of the primary function of educating children is already starting to be apparent.

We already see it at Varsity Cup level where youngsters are not getting proper educations and are rugby players who study in order to play rugby instead of students who play rugby. Courses in aids management and transport are a joke. We are doing this generation a disservice.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:23 am 
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beachboy wrote:
OomPB wrote:
Sards wrote:
Sandstorm wrote:
Sards wrote:
It's true. We get huge turnouts at school sports.


It's free ;)


Where do you watch school sport ?

Entrance may be free yes but the rest sets you back a bit.
Not that I am complaining.

You'll pay entrance fees at all our high schools.

Nope. You wont pay entrance at any of the schools in the Southern Suburbs. When my son was playing and we would travel all the way to schools in the Boland only to be charged to get into the ground used to irritate me. Making money off visiting schools parents is pretty poor form.

That article by Barry has some serious warnings for SA Schools rugby. There is every chance of killing the goose that lays the golden egg. But selfishness and putting the schools name ahead of the primary function of educating children is already starting to be apparent.

We already see it at Varsity Cup level where youngsters are not getting proper educations and are rugby players who study in order to play rugby instead of students who play rugby. Courses in aids management and transport are a joke. We are doing this generation a disservice.



Always happened. I can tell you stories about some of our most revered Boks' ... lack of academic enterprise...
Not that they were stupid - they were just totally disinterested.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:27 am 
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Kids tend go through growth spurs at different ages. If he was always smaller than his peers then maybe I'll say his a kortgat but if its only now then I say give him some time, he'll catch up soon enough.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:33 am 
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Normally. My youngest was a kortgat at fourteen. He ended up a 6'2" 120kg loosehead prop *(without steroids) Decent level he played.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:37 am 
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Average Joe wrote:
Kids tend go through growth spurs at different ages. If he was always smaller than his peers then maybe I'll say his a kortgat but if its only now then I say give him some time, he'll catch up soon enough.

He was always on par, but his puberty seems to be a bit delayed compared to his peers. He still has boyish features, where his mates are young men already. I am 1.87m, his older brother is 1.85 at 18, but was even smaller at 14. Late bloomer I'm afraid, but the bus might be pulling away from the station already, as he is not part of the advanced structures atm.

Private school is sniffing around though, but he will then be part of a third tier school. Probably will bloom a bit late.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:41 am 
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beachboy wrote:
Courses in aids management and transport are a joke. We are doing this generation a disservice.
Wish Maties have those. Then my laaitie would played SA u21 hockey. He dont want to go to UCT, he is off to the UK, already have a year contract coaching at Queens College, Taunton.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:45 am 
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Bloutoria wrote:
Average Joe wrote:
Kids tend go through growth spurs at different ages. If he was always smaller than his peers then maybe I'll say his a kortgat but if its only now then I say give him some time, he'll catch up soon enough.

He was always on par, but his puberty seems to be a bit delayed compared to his peers. He still has boyish features, where his mates are young men already. I am 1.87m, his older brother is 1.85 at 18, but was even smaller at 14. Late bloomer I'm afraid, but the bus might be pulling away from the station already, as he is not part of the advanced structures atm.

Private school is sniffing around though, but he will then be part of a third tier school. Probably will bloom a bit late.

Ouboet please dont force your kiddie in rugby. Enjoyment is the most important, no matter the team or school. He only need a big enough heart, the rest will follow.

Is he at Waterkloof


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:55 am 
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OomPB wrote:
Bloutoria wrote:
Average Joe wrote:
Kids tend go through growth spurs at different ages. If he was always smaller than his peers then maybe I'll say his a kortgat but if its only now then I say give him some time, he'll catch up soon enough.

He was always on par, but his puberty seems to be a bit delayed compared to his peers. He still has boyish features, where his mates are young men already. I am 1.87m, his older brother is 1.85 at 18, but was even smaller at 14. Late bloomer I'm afraid, but the bus might be pulling away from the station already, as he is not part of the advanced structures atm.

Private school is sniffing around though, but he will then be part of a third tier school. Probably will bloom a bit late.

Ouboet please dont force your kiddie in rugby. Enjoyment is the most important, no matter the team or school. He only need a big enough heart, the rest will follow.

Is he at Waterkloof


I am leaving him alone. Committed not to miss a single game he plays and boy I'm enjoying it. There is something really special about standing in the pouring rain under an umbrella, watching an u/14B game. He has so much talent it brings tears to my eye. He used to have Jacques Cronje's brother as coach at Club Rugby for a while. He said he hasn't seen a sidestep like his in a long time.

He's in Garsies.


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