Sharks loan in Ruan Pienaar and Tian Meyer

Date published: September 8 2021 - Planet Rugby

The Sharks have announced that Springbok legend Ruan Pienaar and fellow scrum-half Tian Meyer will join them on short-term deals from the Cheetahs.

The double move is part of an agreement between the two South African sides which they hope will benefit both parties and also South African rugby.

In terms of the arrangement, the Sharks and Cheetahs will make some players available to each other on request and when competitions don’t overlap.

Meyer is available for the Sharks’ United Rugby Championship tour and will then return to the Cheetahs, with Pienaar joining them for a longer spell.

In return, the Sharks will make some of their players available on loan to the Cheetahs for international and Currie Cup matches they are preparing for.

Not something new

“The cooperation 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,” read a statement from the Sharks.

“This agreement is not something new. The Toyota Cheetahs have had such agreements with the neighbouring Griffons and Griquas as well as Toyota Verblitz in Japan. Cooperations of this kind is becoming more commonplace in professional rugby, especially when the competitions of the teams do not overlap.

“It is essential for both the Toyota Cheetahs and the Cell C Sharks to perform optimally in forthcoming matches and to serve the interests of SA rugby. The agreement will support this objective.”

Harold Verster and Dr. Eduard Coetzee, the CEOs of the Toyota Cheetahs and the Cell C Sharks, added: “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 cooperation agreement would help both teams and offer them flexibility.”