Western Province coach John Dobson is not a fan of the one-round Currie Cup format.
Instead, he believes the design doesn’t allow coaches to introduce youngsters to the top level of the domestic game.
Dobson will take charge of the Stormers for the first time in next year’s Super Rugby tournament and would have liked nothing more than to build some depth for his squad this season already.
But with each team playing each other once during the group phase of the Currie Cup, with the top four then advancing to the semifinals, coupled by the pressure of having to win the tournament, it is an impossible task.
The competition kicks off this weekend, with Dobson’s WP facing the Blue Bulls, with the final taking place nine weeks later on September 7.
Of the format, which was the same last year, Dobson says: “If we are to say it’s a developmental competition and a preparatory competition [for Super Rugby], we need to play it over a double round to get guys through.
John Dobson says the Currie Cup needs to return to a double-round league if it is to become a proper developmental competition. pic.twitter.com/jBX0WCeyxh— SA Rugby magazine (@SARugbymag) July 8, 2019
“If you are going to use it as a developmental [tournament], you have to use the guys on the edge, the guys who want to play Super Rugby.
“But there’s just no room to manoeuver again.
“If you’re going to say it’s our premier domestic competition, then it needs to be treated like that in terms of the fixtures and the number of teams.
“Then I don’t mind a single round.
“But I think if you’re going to try and bring players through and increase the depth of South African rugby, then I think we need a double round.
“If you’re sitting at Griquas, the SuperSport Challenge is not an easy sell for you to any suite holders and sponsors to, let’s say, what the Currie Cup is supposed to be.
“But here you have only three home games.
“For those unions it need to be a double round as well.”