More on Beast (et al)

November 12, 2009 in Rugby, Springboks

I hope Tank won’t mind me posting my further comments on Beast on here.  I went reading a bit, searching for these “principles” that Stofile was talking about.

Now, I always believed that you firstly have to be a South African before you can play for the Springboks, but ever since Brian Mujati and Beast Mtwarira’s inclusion in the Bok side, I was led to believe that you can play for the Springboks if you have played a certain amount of Rugby in South Africa.

Now, the IRB regulations are pretty simple.  If you want to play for a different country than the country of your birth or in which you have citizenship, you must play a minimum of three years in that country before you are eligible to play for that country’s national side.

But SASCOC regulations pre-2009 say that:

“National colours will only be considered for sportsmen and sportswomen who can submit proof that they are South African nationals, i.e. they must be in possession of a valid South African passport.  Athletes with South African resident permits only are not eligible.” (find the complete document here)


Interestingly, there is another version of the regulations I have found which say the following:


“National Colours will only be considered for sportsmen and sportswomen who can submit proof that they are South African nationals, i.e. they must be in possession of a valid South African passport. Athletes with South African resident permits only, are not eligible. This rule does not apply to Managers and Coaches.”



I suspect the regulation was conveniently changed to accomodate the Bafana Bafana coaches, but I am not sure which one is the earlier of the two versions as the official link on the Sports and Recreational department’s website, unsurprisingly, does not work.

So, it is true, if Beast is not a South Arfrican citizen, he may not play for the National team based on the regulations of SASCOC alone.

Also within these regulations, the following is determined under “Conditions” for awarding national colours:

“National Colours may be awarded specifically to sportsman and/or sportswoman who actually participate as a member of a representative team or as an individual and to the official reserves, if merited and as determined by the technical rules and regulations of the relevant member and its international controlling body.”


Now, considering the IRB ruling, does that not give authority in conjunction with the above to award colours to players such as Beast? If all non-citizen players may not compete, but the coach is allowed to be a foreign national (and be awarded colours) how equitible and fair is this whole policy in its essence, since the very reason non-citizen players are excluded, should also be applicable to coaches. How fair is it to choose a foreign coach but not foreign players who qualify in terms of the International controlling body. Fairness and merit are the key principles embedded in these regulations.

I seriously feel for Beast. On the one hand I would like to agree that only South African citizens should be permitted to play, coach and manage our national sports teams.  On the other, one has to have regard for the international controlling bodies’ regulations as well. And I like Beast, he is a good player, so we can ask the question, is he standing in a South African citizen’s way of getting National Colours and what would it take for him to get citizenship?

Also note that the regulations state: “if merited“. Therefore, there is no place for giving players National colours if they did not deserve it on merit, and we all know SARU only pick players on merit..

It is strange that after 19 tests he played for SA, this issue has not been resolved yet. And certainly, the ministry cannot claim they were not aware of the situation, as they would have had to approve Beast getting his colours in the first instance and I am left wondering how this will impact on his performance…if he plays.

12 responses to More on Beast (et al)

  1. MU you really had me searching and looking around.
    I was sure Beast is an SA citizen now and could play.

    BUT then I saw the date of the Post. :)

  2. Ag who can take anything these administrators say seriously anymore. Rules written and rules broken at will, no accountability and no consistency. Idiots everywhere… Great research and post Uysh. How can these idiots be running sport in this country when every jan trap en sy maatjie can see how wrong they are and can probably do a better job anyway!

    • Thanks boet. THis is actually an old post I did when the BEast story came up. Referring to it on the Mujati issue now, I just re-categorised it from Uncategorised to Rugby and it showed up as a new post!

  3. Monty was born in Walvisbay. That was part of the Cape Province since 1878 and was included into the SA Union in 1910. It only became part of Namimbia in 1990. So Monty was born in SA. The other players you mentioned grew up in SA. Steward’s Mom was a Canadian but his dad a South African and he grew up in SA.

  4. @REM Steward never lived in Canada, his Mom was Canadian. The law changed in 2007. Prior to that lots of British guys played for the Boks. I agree with the law although I believe the Beast is a great player and after 19 tests this should have been cleared in 2008.
    @Met Uysh – good research. Hope SARU is wide awake as well.

  5. The SASCOC regulations seem to be clumsily formulated. Par for any legislation of whatever nature here. It says: “National colours will only be considered…”. It refers to future action. In Beast’s case whatever they were supposed to have done before have fallen away. They have awarded the colours and have waved any rights they may have had to take a different view now. It might have been a very fortunate oversight but it is done.

    And they have defnitely created a very nasty little precedent which they will have to deal with in future.

  6. This is a country of double standards. Has always been and will always be. If the IRB alows him to play then he can play.

  7. Good Man

  8. Amen to that!!

  9. Top post Uysh. Love the fact that some blogs generate others. Great research this, and your parting point is the one that concerns me the most. Why now?

  10. like Tank mentioned in his comments to Kitch, Krige, Skinstad and Monty are not SA born but still represented them. There was a similiar case like this with Kees Lensing(former BB and Shark forward). I also remember Christian Stewart(Canada), Kevin Putt(New Zealand) and even in cricket Kepler Wessels(Australia) playing for South Africa, and this after they have completed a stint at club level. If im not mistaken, this is Tendai’s third year with the Sharks.

    If you ask me, a sorry excuse to piss of people. I feel for those saying that only SA citizens should represent the country but in cases of severe circumstance, the guy has played 19Test so this is non negiotable…let him play, he deserves to be there!!

  11. Seems like between the time I wrote this and posted it, Beast was cleared to play citing the following:

    “The protocol revolved around clause 6(3) of the National Sport and Recreation Amendment Act of 2007, which requires an explanation to the Minister of Sport for the selection of non-South African nationals.”

    My question is, did they have to explain it to him again? Did he forget why Beast was included when he was first selected? hhmmm….