WPRFU shed no new light on coaching situation
Western Province Rugby Football Union (WPRFU) president Thelo Wakefield admitted that the organisation was taking steps to resolve an ‘internal personnel’ issue between Stormers assistant coaches Paul Treu and Paul Feeney.
Wakefield‚ chief executive Paul Zacks and director of rugby Gert Smal met with the Stormers coaches after Treu walked out of a review meeting last week.
There have been simmering tensions between Treu and Feeney although the nature of their failure to get on has not been made clear.
“The team management matter‚ in our opinion‚ has been overly amplified in the media and is clearly an internal personnel matter that will be resolved‚” Wakefield said.
He didn’t express how it would be resolved‚ nor did he shed any light on what the source of tension is.
The Stormers endured a poor 2018 Super Rugby campaign‚ losing 10 of 16 matches.‚ which no doubt added to the general sense of unhappiness in the camp.
But they have reached the play-offs twice in three years under head coach Robbie Fleck.
Treu has been part of the staff every year under Fleck while Feeney joined in 2017.
“A fruitful and amicable meeting was held today (on Wednesday)‚ with all members committed to finding solutions‚” Wakefield said.
“Today’s meeting took the form of a fact finding and diagnostic exercise‚ forming part of our season review process.”
But Wakefield stopped short of endorsing the current coaching staff and publicly backing them to continue in their positions in 2019.
Fleck still has one more year on his contract to see out.
“We believe that we have an exceptional group for next season and want to ensure all issues and potential stumbling blocks are dealt with and clarity provided where required‚ to ensure we have the best possible chance in the Super Rugby competition next season‚” Wakefield added vaguely.
“We are convinced that as part of our overall season review‚ the process started today (on Wednesday) will undoubtedly assist us in attaining that goal.”