Sadie could opt for Sevens
Bulls midfielder Johann Sadie may be the first high-profile player to opt for a dual-contract, allowing him to play both Sevens and provincial rugby in the near future.
Sadie, who SuperSport.com reported on Thursday was given the blessing of the Bulls to look for a new province, is currently considering three options on the table for his immediate future.
The Bulls confirmed they would not stand in his way, and release him from his contract if he found a province who would give him more game time, and currently his agent is looking for a new home for the beleaguered midfielder.
While the Cheetahs are the favoured option, there is a concern that they may not be able to afford Sadie’s price tag -- which is said to be around R1.4-million per season. The Cheetahs have a limited budget which is not as high as the other Super Rugby franchises' and it would mean that Sadie would have to take a pay cut in order to make the move.
Another option on the table is to combine his contract with a National Sevens contract, which may make more sense and help that Sadie’s contract doesn’t need too much of a cut.
Players such as Sadie are normally out of the range of Paul Treu’s side as the Super Rugby franchises refuse to release them, but the Cheetahs have had a very good relationship with the Sevens side in recent years, with a number of Cheetahs players turning out for the national Sevens side. It is understood that Sadie’s representatives have met with SA Rugby’s director of rugby, Rassie Erasmus, to talk about the player's future, including a possible move to the Sevens team.
Further clarity about Sadie’s future is expected by the weekend, but it is clear his time at the Bulls is limited.While it is unusual for a player to be released within the first year of his contract, Sadie has struggled in the Bulls pattern and has had problems fitting into the defensive line, making some crucial mistakes during the season which have cost tries.
With this he has struggled with his confidence, before picking up an injury which ended his Super Rugby season. It is understood that he has asked for more game time, or to be allowed to pursue other options if the Bulls do not see him in their future plans.
The midfielder has fallen out of favour, and has watched his roommate and fellow former Stormer JJ Engelbrecht arrive with him at Loftus, before leapfrogging him and cementing a regular starting position, as well as impressing Bok coach Heyneke Meyer enough to earn a call-up to the Bok squad for the recent test against England.
Ludeke confirmed to SuperSport.com on Thursday he had given Sadie his blessing to look elsewhere.
“We are very aware of Johan’s situation and his future and he is concerned that he isn’t getting the playing opportunities he needs because of injuries. He wants to get onto the field to establish himself but is worried he can’t at the moment,” Ludeke told SuperSport.com.
“We will always look at a player's situation and take it to heart. We will always consult with the player and take the best decision for his career going forward. We have given him the green light to look at other options to see if he can get better playing opportunities at other provinces.”