The best-paid South African rugby player earns more than R10 million per year, according to a new report. The Western Province Rugby Union (WPRU) has the biggest player budget of the all the South African rugby franchises, a report indicates.
According to a publication by Netwerk24, it was revealed that on average, a South African Super Rugby player earned R1 055 440 last season, with the figures excluding win bonuses.
The Western Province Rugby Union (WPRU), according to the report, has the biggest player budget of the all the South African rugby franchises, spending R78 million on 128 contracted players (average R609 375) last year.
The Bulls (R68 million for 151 players — average R450 331), Lions (R66 million for 117 players — average R564 103), and Sharks (R65 million for 111 players — average R585 586) — followed in that order.
South Africa’s representatives in the PRO14 — the Cheetahs (R41 million for 92 players — average R445 652) and Southern Kings (R12 million for 68 players — average R176 471) — spent considerably less.
In 2018, the highest-paid player was Sharks prop Tendai ‘Beast’ Mtawarira who earned R3 744 796 through his Super Rugby contract.
The 33-year-old loosehead prop is hugely respected not just in South Africa, where he brought up his 100th test for the Springboks in June against England, but around the world after a glittering international rugby career.
Beast, as Mtawarira is affectionately known, also reached 150 caps in Super Rugby for the Sharks during their quarter-final match last month against the eventual 2018 Super Rugby champions Crusaders in Christchurch, New Zealand.
His earnings, which exclude winning bonuses, are over double the average season earnings by a South African Super Rugby player.
In 2016, Springbok wing, Bryan Habana, who plies his trade in France, for Toulon, is paid an annual salary of £474,600 (R10.7 million) by his club, making him the 9th richest player in the game according to the British newspaper, the Telegraph.