EP Kings set up to fail?
Luke Watson (Gallo Images)
I think the way in which SARU handled the whole matter is unsatisfactory:
* The Kings never got to play in the Currie Cup as promised.Nor the promised competition similar to the one the Lions are now going to play.
* When it was announced that the Kings would play S15 local contracts were sorted out and the only available players,(Lions) were loaned to any franchise except the Kings due to animosity.
* The Lions are allowed to have a squad plus a "reserve squad" kept in training in other franchises
* Why the fuss? Is it really about the rule or is it about not wanting the Kings to do well/the Lions losing out or S15?
* The Kings can only offer a one year S15 contract - the Lions offered full S15 contracts for more than 15 years
* The E P was drained of their players during the above -mentioned period . (The Lions gained Willie Meyer.Baksteen Nel, Delary du Preez, Wiley Human from E P and the present top 42 players of the bulls include 9 E P - players : bjorn Basson,Akona Ndugane, J J Engelbrecht, Jan Serfontein,Johan Stegmann, Jacques Potgieter, Dewald Potgieter, Ryno Gerber,Jano Vermaak - more than the 7 players originating from their own feeder erea) The reason being the fact that E P could only offer Vodacom/ Curry Cup First Divsion contracts AND NOT S15 contracts.
* Ther seems to be the expectation that the Kings (and not all the teams) has the responsability to develop choose players of colour (They have 10 -the most of all the franchises) and thus have the quota-negatives added to their problems!
Come on , give these guys a break!
With all the disadvantages I see a very difficult task for E P and I get the feeling that maybe SARU is using the Kings to
discipline the Lions for a year and limit the Kings' chances to zero so by 2014 we can be back to the status quo of the 5 elite unions on their own!
Unless the Kings get some serious support,even the enemies of the team may later feel humiliated for months and SARU wil get the blame.
Did anybody take note of the history of Promotion Relegation teams? I dont think so.