The 2014 Currie Cup is about to begin and under normal circumstances, local teams would be calling upon the Springboks to help the win it. The competition is very popular, but for those who are relatively new to rugby or don’t follow South African sports, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Currie_Cup will shed some light on this matter. The recent announcements made by the South African Rugby Union are a bit surprising, as the Federation asked the squads not to call any national team players for these games.
In the previous years, the best South African players were an integrated part of the teams competing for the Currie Cup, but this is probably not going to happen in 2014. It goes without saying that some teams are more effective than others, but interesting enough, the ones who have the best players are the most frustrated once. The prospect of not being able to rely on their playmakers is infuriating, but there is very little that they can do, as Sharks CEO John Smit confirmed in a recent statement.
One of the reasons for why the South African Rugby Union made this request is to have these players fit for the rugby championship. This has been a constant concern for the Federation not to get players injured or extremely tired but until recently, the teams were allowed to call upon these top players. It goes without saying that this current edition of the Currie Cup will be far less interesting without the Springboks, but on the bright side, their absence will give younger players a chance to shine.
Only time will tell whether the impact of this request will have a deterring effect on those who are planning on watching the Cup unfold live. For the time being, all we have are mixed reactions from the rugby fans, while the ones opposing the measure are the owners of the teams. From a punter’s perspective, these news are bothersome but they also offer the possibility of bigger profits, because bookmakers will have a hard time finding the perfect odds for the upcoming matches.
Not all news coming from South Africa are worrisome, in fact those who are big fans of Juan Smith have plenty of reasons to rejoice as the player might return for the test rugby match. The player suffered a severe injury two years ago and he decided to take a lengthy break from rugby, but it looks like his health problems are behind him. The best case scenario is to have the former Heineken Cup and Top 14 winner fit to play, which would be a great addition to the Springboks in their quest for victory in the Rugby World Cup scheduled for 2015.