CAPE TOWN – Western Province Rugby Union president Thelo Wakefield has encouraged teams to be ready for the 2018 Western Province club rugby season, as it will start on June 2.
The club competition’s starting date was confirmed during a WP Rugby General Council meeting on Monday night, and it will kick off on June 2 after it was initially postponed due to the Cape water crisis.
The club rugby season usually starts in April.
Rugby wasn’t the only sporting code that had to deal with the dire results of the water crisis, and following a WPRU meeting with all the clubs in February, the union decided to postpone the competition after club and junior cricket was also cancelled following the implementation of Level 6B water restrictions in the City of Cape Town.
And now Wakefield wants the club players to “tackle the season with everything they have”.
“We’ll have a very nice competition for the players, and I urge all players to prepare well and tackle the season with everything they have,” Wakefield told IOL Sport on Tuesday.
“We encourage the club teams to be ready. We will go ahead as normal with the promotion and relegation status.”
Wakefield also said that ideally the club teams should be able to train on their own respective fields.
“We will engage with the City of Cape Town to get special permission to train and prepare properly on their fields. It’s a totally humanitarian goal. We cannot allow community rugby to go astray,” he said.
“In Cape Town we have a helluva following of all 100 clubs on a Saturday. We can’t take that enjoyment away. Clubs spend a lot of money to play away from their fields, and we want them to look forward to something constructive.
“We hope they come to the party and enjoy the rugby.”
The competition will end in September, and the Super Leagues A, B and C will also feature an additional Under-20 section, while the third team division will be scrapped this year.