Did Varsity Cup drop the ball?

Mon, 18 Apr 2016 14:35
Large varsity cup trophy2 800

EXCLUSIVE: The organisers of the Varsity Cup have found themselves staring down both barrels after further allegations have surfaced that newly-crowned champions NWU-Pukke may have fielded an ineligible player.

Throughout the 2016 tournament numerous participating Universities were docked points for fielding ineligible players, none more so than UKZN-Impi who were docked 12 points for the rule breach, which subsequently cost them a place in the promotion/relegation match.

The latest scandal involves a Pukke player, who represented the Impi in 2014. A reliable source linked with UKZN spoke to rugby365 to reveal their concerns.

"What has happened is that one of our former players was playing for Pukke. I never knew about him playing for them and was only made aware of it when I received a call from someone pointing it out to me.

"He was a registered student here in 2014, much in the same way that our player was at UJ. In our case, we submitted our full list of players at the start of the season, and we end up getting a letter from the auditors stating that all our players are good to play.

"Surely, they [the auditors] should have picked up that our player had played for UJ Young Guns in 2014 and everything would have been avoided.

"Varsity Cup should be given the chance to apply the precedent and the rules they have set. We just want fairness and the same rule of thumb to be applied across the board. I don't really see what the differences in the cases are," the source stated.

However, Pukke believe that UKZN are clutching at straws as they feel everything is above board.

"The player concerned played for UKZN in 2014. He did not represent the Pukke in the 2015 Varsity Cup, however, he represented the Leopards in the Currie Cup First Division," a spokesperson for Pukke said.

Having gone through the competition rules and numerous clauses outlined in the official Varsity Cup media guide, the only rule which applies to the matter states the following:

Rule 4. Eligibility (Clause 8 of the Bye-Laws)

4.5.1. No student that was registered as a student at any Varsity Cup and/or Varsity Shield Member University as to referred to in Clauses 3.1 and 3.2 of the Varsity Cup Bye Laws ("Member University") and/or player that has played for any representative team at any Member University during a particular year, is allowed to play for a team of another Member University in any of the Competitions in the following year unless he is a newly enrolled post-graduate student at the University for which he wants to play, or unless he has been authorized in writing to play in terms of the provisions of Clause 8.9 of the Varsity Cup Bye-Laws. No player that is an enrolled bona fide student at a Member University may play for another Member University.

There is no doubt that there are glaring similarities in both cases. However, when looking at the applicable rule, both Universities seem to have played within the rules.

So who is at fault? The Universities or the Varsity Cup board themselves?

@rugby365com

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 28 April 2017
Highlanders v Stormers 07h35 Dunedin
Cardiff Blues v Zebre 18h05 Cardiff
Edinburgh v Dragons 18h35 Myreside
Leinster v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 RDS Arena
Newcastle Falcons v Worcester Warriors 19h00 Kingston Park
Sat, 29 April 2017
Chiefs v Sunwolves 07h35 Hamilton
Reds v Waratahs 09h45 Suncorp Stadium
Force v Lions 11h55 Perth
Ospreys v Ulster 14h00 Liberty Stadium
Bath v Gloucester 14h00 Recreation Ground
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Saracens v Bristol 14h00 Allianz Park
Harlequins v Wasps 14h00 Twickenham Stoop
Leicester Tigers v Sale Sharks 14h00 Welford Road
Cheetahs v Crusaders 15h15 Bloemfontein
Treviso v Munster 17h05 Stadio Monigo
Kings v Rebels 17h30 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Connacht v Scarlets 18h35 Sportsground
Jaguares v Sharks 19h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 30 April 2017
Brumbies v Blues 06h05 Canberra
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 23 April 2017
Clermont Auvergne v Leinster 27 | 22
Sat, 22 April 2017
Sharks v Rebels 9 | 9
Bulls v Cheetahs 20 | 14
Munster v Saracens 10 | 26
Force v Chiefs 7 | 16
Crusaders v Stormers 57 | 24
Highlanders v Sunwolves 40 | 15
Fri, 21 April 2017
Lions v Jaguares 24 | 21
Waratahs v Kings 24 | 26
Hurricanes v Brumbies 56 | 21
Mon, 17 April 2017
UP-Tuks v Maties 28 | 21
Sun, 16 April 2017
Northampton Saints v Saracens 25 | 27
Bristol v Wasps 21 | 36
Sat, 15 April 2017
Connacht v Leinster 24 | 37
Treviso v Edinburgh 21 | 6
VARSITY CUP
MORE LOGS
Pool CUP
Team P W D L Pts
UP-Tuks 8 7 0 1 34
Maties 8 7 0 1 34
UJ 8 5 0 3 25
Shimlas 8 5 0 3 23
Wits 8 4 0 4 21
NWU-Pukke 8 4 0 4 19
NMMU-Madibaz 8 2 0 6 11
UCT-Ikeys 8 2 0 6 9
CUT-Ixias 8 0 0 8 3
Pool SHIELD
Team P W D L Pts
UWC 6 5 0 1 27
Fort Hare 6 4 0 2 20
UKZN-Impi 6 4 0 2 20
WSU 6 3 0 3 14
CPUT 6 2 0 4 10
TUT 6 2 0 4 9
Rhodes 6 1 0 5 6