Like in the Carling Black Label Cup between Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates, rugby fans will be able to pick their own teams for the once-off Champions Match.
CAPE TOWN – In much the same way that soccer fans can vote for players in pre-season matches, rugby supporters will now have an opportunity to do the same in the coming months.
SA Rugby announced on Wednesday that the sponsors of the Currie Cup, Carling Black Label, will host the first ‘Champions Match’ on November 6.
The ‘Champion Team’ will be made up of players from the seven Currie Cup Premier Division sides, as voted for by the fans, which will play against what is described as a “strong opposition side” that will be announced in due course.
Fans of the Bulls, Sharks, Lions, Western Province, Cheetahs, Griquas and Pumas can vote on their mobile phones, Facebook or the Currie Cup website: www.carlingcurriecup.com
To be eligible to vote, fans must purchase a promotional Carling Black Label 500ml can or 750ml bottle branded with Carling Currie Cup artwork in order to use the unique code on the can or bottle.
The match falls in the international window and a break in the upcoming United Rugby Championship, so that the players from the four URC franchises (Bulls, Sharks, Lions and Stormers) will also be available.
“This is a brilliant and innovative concept and will give supporters an unprecedented voice as they will ultimately pick the players for this combined team,” SA Rugby chief executive Jurie Roux said.
“Due to the Covid pandemic, fans were not allowed to attend matches, but their voices were still heard in this era of digital connectivity, and the ‘Champions Match’ will take this up a notch.
“We’ve been involved from the get-go with Carling Black Label, and we are in the process of procuring the opponent, which has unfortunately been complicated by the Covid pandemic.
“SA Rugby will also provide the coaching and medical teams for the Champion team.”