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Rugby | SA Rugby

Strauss appointed Bulls president

The Blue Bulls Rugby Union have appointed Willem Strauss as their interim president following the resignation of Gert Wessels earlier this week.

Strauss, who is well-known in rugby circles, has been a vice-president of the BBRU for the past four years but has been involved in rugby almost all of his life. His appointment is until November, when a permanent president will be appointed.

In 1991 at the tender age of 24 Strauss was appointed as Manager and Executive officer of the South-Eastern Transvaal Rugby Union (Mpumalanga Rugby Union).

He held this position for eight years until 1999, elevating them from 22nd to fifth on the South African provincial rugby rankings, creating a formidable team beating the likes of Transvaal, Northern Transvaal and Western Province in various Cup matches in the late 1990s. They also defeated Scotland and Wales in that time period.

Strauss played an integral role in elevating the union to one of the top unions in South Africa.

Between 1996 and 1999 he also filled the roll of Marketing Manager of the Northern Bulls Super12 franchise. He thereafter established his own promotion company, specialising in promoting rugby tournaments and events.

He created history when he became the first private promoter to arrange a test between Samoa and the Springboks and was also the driving force behind the @lantic Schools 7s tournaments, which drew more than 1 000 schools teams.

Strauss has a deep knowledge of the problems in Bulls rugby at the moment and, given the financial challenges the union is going through and the impending retirement of CEO Barend van Graan, is a welcome appointment at the union.

He is married to Elmarie Strauss and has four children, Hermias, Enan, Marlizca and Mishke, and is also the step-brother of Springbok flyhalf De Wet Ras.

“The Blue Bulls Rugby Union and the Blue Bulls Company would like to congratulate him on being elected, and would like to wish him everything of the best in this new role,” the statement from the BBRU read.


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