Kings to play Super Rugby

SARU have confirmed South Africa’s Super Rugby participants in 2013 …  The top four teams in the South African Conference in 2012 (Stormers, Bulls, The Sharks and Cheetahs) will join the Southern Kings!

The teams were confirmed after the General Meeting accepted a proposal first tabled by the Executive Council in January. The proposal was that: “The franchise occupying the lowest log position of the five franchises at the end of 2012 would be relegated.”

The Lions, who finished bottom of the South African Conference, will have the chance to regain their status in 12 months’ time. The Executive Council had previously determined that the bottom team in 2013 would play in a two-legged promotion and relegation series against the relegated franchise. The promotion/relegation series will also be in place in 2014 and 2015 – at which point the broadcast contract expires.

“All rugby provinces have been consistently in support of the need for an Eastern Cape team in the Super Rugby competition,” said Mr Oregan Hoskins, president of SARU. “That decision was first taken in 2005 but their inclusion has twice been postponed.

“We made a commitment to the Kings to include them in 2013 and rugby has delivered on that commitment. The franchise represents more clubs than any other region – apart from the Stormers – and contains numerous leading rugby schools. It has been starved of top-class rugby competition for a decade and a half and now it has the chance to show what it can do.”

Mr Hoskins said that SANZAR’s decision to grant the 15th franchise to Melbourne in 2011 – rather than the Southern Kings – had created a dilemma for SARU. He said that the organisation and players had wanted a “rugby solution” to accommodate six franchises in five places and this had been delivered, as challenging as it was for the relegated team.

“The provinces asked for a rugby solution and we believe that this was the fairest and most transparent method to respond to what is undoubtedly a less than ideal situation,” he said. “We also canvassed Super Rugby players before the start of the season, through the Players’ Association, and this was their preferred mechanism. Jurie Roux, the CEO of SARU, said that the decision to apply a promotion and relegation system from 2013 was standard practice in sport.

“We operate promotion and relegation in all our Currie Cup competitions, with the bottom-placed team being relegated unless it wins a play off,” said Roux. “Our strategic goal is to have six strong franchises covering the whole of South Africa and this decision keeps all of them in play on an annual basis.”


  1. I feel for Hoskins and SARU. However, promotion and relegation is a fact of life in most sporting leagues in the world. This must be a big blow for Gauteng Rugby.

  2. They will last 1 season. There is no way they have a squad to go from B section rugby to Super rugby, they do not have the funds to buy ± 25 players (6 of the current squad might? be able to play at S15 level plus squads will now have to have 6/7 props as they have to have 4 as part of the 22 from 1.1.13 -) – and no there will not be a flood of Lions players moving to PE.
    This is a monumental task for the Kings franchise. Interesting that rugby people in PE know they are no where near ready for such a huge leap.
    Sadly, rugby is just a pawn in a very politicised area.

  3. Tank,here is the start of what the Kings will end up with as a S15 squad. Catrakillis-his only asset is an ability to kick for goal, otherwise he is a very average 10. No loss to WP/Stormers. Kings will collect youngsters who think they are at that level,players whose agents want a bit more commission and players who think that 1 year in S15 will do there careers a world of good.

    1. Neil, I disagree with you. If I look at the current flyhalf talent pool in WP, Demetri is 2nd best – behind Peter Grant. That said the type of game Allister wants them to play, Demetri is actually the best bet. (Grant is more of a running flyhalf than a kicking one). I also heard DK was coached by Andrew Mehrtens some time ago. I don’t know if that is true. In any case, very talented player. I haven’t seen anything I like in Gary van Aswegen, Kurt Coleman and definitely not Burton Francis. This said DK, GvA and KC are all very inexperienced, but Demetri, IMO, has a better rugby brain than any of them.

      I think that the Kings can be lucky to get a player like him. I don’t know if it is a wise move from DK to join the Kings, but at least he will (hopefully) get some game time in the S15. I also think that Alan Solomons is a very good judge of talent – in any case much better than the current talent seekers employed at WP.

Comments are closed.