The Toyota Cheetahs and Cell C Sharks have announced a co-operation agreement to exchange players and to support each other on a broader front.
In terms of the agreement, the two franchises will make some of their players available to each other on request and when competitions do not overlap.
To this end, they’ve confirmed that Cheetahs scrumhalves Ruan Pienaar and Tian Meyer will be joining the Sharks on short-term deals. Meyer will be available for the United Rugby Championship outbound tour and will then return to the Cheetahs.
In return, the Sharks will make some of their players available on loan to the Cheetahs for international and Currie Cup games that the Cheetahs are preparing for.
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The co-operation agreement will be broader than just the exchange of players. Both teams will benefit financially. As they will not always be playing in the same competitions, they will be able to support each other “in times of need and pressure”.
The Cheetahs have had such agreements with the Griffons and Griquas, as well as Toyota Verblitz in Japan.
“The international disruption of rugby by Covid-19 and its economic consequences necessitates the rebuilding and strengthening of this wonderful game. This requires innovative plans to retain good players and coaches, to maintain performance and to ultimately achieve. The co-operation agreement would help both teams and offer them flexibility”, said Harold Verster and Dr Eduard Coetzee, the respective CEOs of the Toyota Cheetahs and the Cell C Sharks.