Rassie Erasmus rumours won't go away

The South African rumour mill clicked back into action over the weekend, strengthening reports that Rassie Erasmus is negotiating with the South African Rugby Union with a view to returning to one of the premier positions in his native country.
Rassie Erasmus rumours won't go away

To do so, he would have to cut short his contract with Munster, a development that would be a disaster and distract attention from the massive games looming over the next couple of months.

“It’s the same as last week,” Erasmus maintained during yesterday’s Munster press conference at UL.

“I remember it was the same when Jaco Taute was coming there... it’s really speculation and, when something is really definite, I will tell you guys. South Africa is close to my heart and I talk to them daily.

“There is really constant conversation going on, but all the things in the media are speculation.

"Some things are said that are really not true. I’ve also got an obligation not to make me something [important] in the middle of our season. We’re playing so many important games over the next few weeks...

"Even last week, people were asking me if it was a distraction. It’s not something internally that we have talked about, because it is not an issue at this stage.”

The success enjoyed by Munster was not anticipated when Erasmus arrived last summer with his second in command Jacques Nienaber, and the excitement generated by games such as Saturday’s European Cup defeat of Toulouse might yet override the attraction of a big job back home.

“The atmosphere on Saturday was really electric,” Erasmus enthused.

“Nothing will match the game we played for Axel from the players and coaches’ side.

"Emotionally, we were so attached to that game and it will always stand out for me, but then you get surprised every single time there is a game at Thomond Park... especially like those few minutes in the second half against Toulouse when they got the upper hand and the crowd started singing and it really lifted us.”

Many believe Munster felt the game was all over when CJ Stander’s try opened up a 15-point advantage, but Erasmus differed: “Underestimating the opposition will never be one of our problems this season anyway.”

While the semi-final will be played at the Aviva Stadium, Erasmus is looking forward to another massive display of support from the Red Army: “They helped us massively against Toulouse and hopefully we’ll create some of that at the Aviva.”

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