SARU confirmed on Thursday that the Southern Kings will participate in the 2013 Super Rugby Competition, but this inclusion comes at the expense of the Lions.
Turning the clock back to May, Jurie Roux, CEO of SARU, told the committee that: “The Kings will play in the competition in 2013, but not at the expense of one of the other franchises”
Not good news for the Lions, but what does this mean for the Kings? For the Kings and the people of the Eastern Cape it’s great news; finally they will be able to compete against the best teams on the world stage. Whether the Kings will be competitive is another story, but it will definitely be a massive learning curve for the players and coaching staff.
The fans will be treated to some of the best teams and players in the world, but the reality is very few will be going down to the stadium to support the Kings as many folk down in the Eastern Cape have adopted other teams from South Africa and even New Zealand to support.
The question everyone has already answered “no” to is, will the Kings be competitive – a team that’s only been playing competitively in the Currie Cup 1st division for the last 3 seasons and one that failed in their promotion/relegation game against The Pumas after winning the 1st division in 2010 against SWD. They finished 2nd in 2011 after they came short against Boland.
This season they’ve had 7 from 8 wins and a draw against The Pumas.
Their slogan, “EP ON THE RISE”, is not far from the truth if you look where they’ve come from a few seasons ago.
“We will be ready. We will be good to go and we will be competitive,” Alan Solomons told the Cape Times.
The guys from the Kings are upbeat about their opportunity of playing Super Rugby, but will this hurdle be too high for the men from the Easter Cape and would the inclusion in the Premier Division of the Currie Cup not have been a better and safer option?
The reality is, the Eastern Cape needs to improve their rugby, you need to play against better teams to develop your own game, you need to expose yourself to the best week in and week out.
There’s been talks of Kings transforming rugby in the EC, but that won’t happen in your first season of Super Rugby, Kings need to step up to another level with players who have been there before they can even think of developing other players.
Western Province and Stormers flyhalf Demetri Catrakilis has announced his move to 2013 Super Rugby team the Southern Kings, with him Luke Watson, Paul Perez, Jaco Engels and Michael Killian would be the players that’s been there and the Kings need to build their team around these guys, guys with experience and that’s played in finals, whether Super Rugby or Currie Cup.
“It doesn’t make sense in any sector of society that you are sitting with a scenario that you are in Super Rugby for one year and expected to achieve.
“But I think we, as the South Eastern Cape, play the hand that we are dealt and we make the best of it.” Cheeky Watson’s reply to the one year inclusion in Super Rugby 2013.
Another question, will one year be enough for the Kings, did SARU give them enough time to get a decent competitive team together? In your first year of Super Rugby what would be competitive? A tall ask for the Kings, try and win 5 games and when you lose, lose within 7 points, that would be competitive, at least in my opinion.
At the end of the Super Rugby season there will be promotion/relegation games between the last South African side and the Lions, and the same will happen in 2014 and 2015.
With SARU delaying the outcome of their decision, did they actually set The Kings up to fail, one can only imagine it’s left the Kings with very little time for sponsors and recruiting new players.Tweet