Harold taunts the Lion

Brian van Rooyen’s biggest supporter of two years ago, Cheetahs president Harold Verster, is now his greatest opponent in the build-up to Friday’s SARU presidential elections.

Verster’s latest taunts include the taunt that Brian the Lion is buying votes. And, as Independent Newspapers’ Stephen Nell and Jacques Van Der Westhuyzen, report the Lion is angry.

They wrote on Tuesday that the Lion is ready to take legal action against Verster, who has openly campaigned for Oregan Hoskins to be the new president.

Verster was quoted as saying: “I wouldn’t put it past Brian to say vote for me and I’ll do this and that for you,” said Verster.

Van Rooyen said it was not the first time that he had been publicly maligned by Verster.

“I will not stoop as low as Harold Verster by responding to him. I will use the appropriate means to deal with it, be that legally or otherwise. This is an election, not a character assassination,” Van Rooyen told the Cape Times.

But Verster said there would “never be peace and harmony if Brian stays on”.

“What must the rugby world think of us as a nation when the rugby president is facing an investigation into mismanagement?”

Van Rooyen said the allegations of violations of SA Rugby’s code of conduct did not relate to “mismanagement”.

Van Rooyen, meanwhile, addressed the Lions executive a week after they officially confirmed they would not support him.

He said: “It went very well. They asked me questions and had concerns about sponsors allegedly not wanting me and I referred them to a (media) statement (in which sponsors said that they were not concerned about who the president is).”