South African Rugby announced significant pay cuts on Friday in its efforts to save up to 1.2-billion rand ($62 million, Sh6.2 billion) from its budget for a year in which rugby fixtures have been severely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Jurie Roux, chief executive of SA Rugby, said the sport's salary bill for employees, players and officials had been reduced by 25 percent, with those on the highest pay scales losing up to 43 percent of their income.
Those earning less than 20,000 rand (about $1,025, Sh109,782) a month would not be affected.
Some players opted to cancel their contracts after being given a window which expired on Thursday.
SA Rugby did not reveal how many players had taken this option but Springbok hooker Malcolm Marx is among them, according to local reports.
But Springbok wing Makazole Mapimpi, who scored South Africa's first try in their World Cup final win over England last year, has turned down an estimated $460,000 a year offer from a Japanese club, according to the Sport24 website.
The announcement of planned savings came after it was announced earlier on Friday that home international matches against Scotland and Georgia in July had been postponed because of the pandemic.
According to a SA Rugby statement, the pay cuts make up 13 percent of the planned savings, with the bulk coming from the cancellation of competitions and other operational budgets.