No Craven Week 2020
No Craven Week Under-18, no Academy Week, no LSEN Craven Week, no Grant Khomo Week, no Girls Under-18 Week, no Girls Under-16 Week, no Under-13 Craven Week – it looks as if they are set to be officially cancelled, victims for 2020 of the coronavirus.
Education authorities in South Africa want cancellation and it seems that a “meeting” on Monday will enable rugby to announce this formally.
There has been for some time concern about the Youth Weeks because of financial difficulties with the loss of Coca Cola sponsorship but this is simply Covid 19 that has decided that they will not take place.
It is the first time since the 1964 Craven Week in East London, a part of the SA Rugby Board’s 75th anniversary celebrations that there will be no Craven Week.
It was to have been the fourth time that Port Elizabeth would have hosted the Under-18 Craven Week. They did so in 1988, 2000 and 2012. This year’s Craven week would have been hosted at Nelson Mandela University,
In fact, one wonders whether there will be any schools rugby at all in 2020. Already the Easter Tournaments at St Stithians, Kearsney, St John’s, Krugersdorp High and KES have been cancelled, as have the Affies Centenary celebration which included teams from England and Uruguay. There are more cancellations – Wildeklawer, North-South, Paarl Gim’s Under-16 and Under-14 tournaments and Paarl Boys’ High’s Under-15 tournament.
All of this will have come at huge disappointment to players, parents, coaches, schools, referees and hosts. It will also deprive communities of considerable income.
If the Currie Cup is able to take place later in the year, it may well be possible to get the school teams that would have gone to the Under-18 Craven Week to play on such occasions.