KNYSNA NEWS - The SA Rugby Union (Saru) has launched a pilot programme in a joint initiative with the SWD Rugby Football Union to form a municipal league, of which Knysna Municipality and seven other municipalities fall part.
While a municipal rugby league might evoke amusing images of mayors and councillors running around on rugby fields bashing each other to pieces, it is not the case, unfortunately.
Instead, the municipal teams are an amalgamation of the best rugby players from the respective clubs that fall within the municipalities' jurisdiction.
While SWD might be one of the smaller provincial unions in SA rugby, it is by no stretch of the imagination a union that lacks community involvement and passion, which is one of the main reasons why Saru elected to use SWD as the hamster on which to test the pilot municipal league, according to SWD vice president Ben Brinkhuis.
Speaking at the launch of Knysna Municipality's representative rugby team on Monday 23 September, Brinkhuis touched on a number of aspects of SWD club rugby: "We are a union with some of the toughest club rugby structures in South Africa, with a very high level of competitiveness right through all our leagues," Brinkhuis said. "We will prove to Saru that this is a competition that should be run throughout South Africa, by running a pilot league of such high quality that they will see the importance it holds within communities," Brinkhuis enthusiastically proclaimed. SWD's muni league comprises eight local municipalities split across two divisions (Shield and Cup), and each municipality will play its opponents in its divisions twice, with the eventual winner of the Shield division ultimately promoted to the Cup division.
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