Rugby news from Western Province:
New path for WP Rugby and adidas:
The established partnership between Western Province Rugby and apparel sponsor adidas will take on a new direction as of the end of this year.
The association between WP Rugby and adidas stretches back more than 30 years, with the current agreement between the two parties coming to an end on October 31.
adidas will continue as Western Province Rugby’s footwear partner, while WP Rugby will now take over the apparel, merchandising and retail programmes, which is in line with its turnaround strategy.
Western Province Rugby Group CEO Paul Zacks has extensive experience in apparel manufacturing, distribution, licensing and retail, which provides the union with an opportunity to be innovative and lead the way in maximising their commercial opportunities and revenue streams.
“adidas has been a valued partner to Western Province Rugby and they remain our choice as preferred footwear partner. But we are also very excited about the possibilities going forward as we explore the new opportunities that lie in our own apparel ranges, in line with our turnaround strategy.
“The result of these innovative changes is that there will be a host of new ways in which the DHL Newlands Faithful can show their unrivalled passion for our teams,” he said.
Roddy van Breda, Managing Director of adidas SA, commented: “The relationship between adidas and Western Province dates back to the days before rugby became a professional sport and it has been a fantastic and memorable partnership. The time has come for us to adjust our direction and we look forward to helping the union’s various representative teams win even more trophies in the future.”
President of the Western Province Rugby Football Union, Mr Thelo Wakefield, believes the changes signal an exciting new chapter for Western Province Rugby.
“This is an exciting time for WP Rugby as we look to forge our own future while still continuing our proud association with adidas,” he said.
Gold Cup triumph for False Bay:
DirectAxis False Bay buried the ghosts of 2016 as they surged to their maiden Gold Cup triumph in front of a record home crowd at the Phillip Herbstein Field in Cape Town on Saturday.
‘The Bay’, runners-up to Newrak Rustenburg Impala last year, withstood a late onslaught from KZN champions Go Nutz College Rovers to win 30-18 and so claim the biggest prize in non-university club rugby.
The match was also personal triumph for 30-year-old False Bay skipper Graham Knoop, who not only won the Man of the Match award but also the title of South African Club Player of the Year, having led the team to a near-perfect season during which the Constantia-based club lost just one match, in the domestic Western Province Super League.
DirectAxis False Bay’s win was also testament to their 35-year-old head coach Jonno van der Walt, who was named SA Club Coach of the Year for his efforts. Under Van der Walt’s watch, False Bay have lost just three of 48 matches over the past two seasons. The team is now unbeaten at home for three years.
“This was without doubt the biggest day in our 88-year history,” said False Bay chairman Kevin Lennett.
“We had over 5,000 people come through the gates, which was the biggest crowd we’ve ever seen here, and I think it’s fair to say the people were treated to an afternoon that will be spoken of for decades to come.”
DirectAxis False Bay – Tries: Danie Roux (2), Marcello Sampson, Tapiwa Tsomondo. Conversions: Adnaan Osman. Penalties: Osman, Meryck Ward.
Go Nutz College Rovers – Tries: Chris Jordaan, Grant Rattray. Conversion: Gavin Scott. Penalties: Scott (2).