Cape Town - Deon Davids is a front-runner to be named as the next Springbok coach, replacing the under fire Allister Coetzee at the end of the year.
Sport24 understands that Davids, the current coach of the Southern Kings, is rated highly by new Springbok Director of Rugby Rassie Erasmus and is very much on the radar to help resuscitate the Boks.
Speculation is that Coetzee, after a second uninspiring year at the helm of the national side, is out of time and that he will be axed after SA Rugby's December 13 General Council Meeting.
Davids would be given the title of head coach, but would effectively be serving as Erasmus' No 2.
An assistant coach to Eric Sauls when the Junior Boks finished third at the 2009 Junior World Championship, Davids also coached the Emerging Springboks the year before that.
Since then, he has had stints with the Golden Lions and the SWD Eagles, and in 2016 he was appointed as coach of the Kings as they made their return to Super Rugby.
Erasmus, who was heading up the SA Rugby Mobi Unit at the time, is believed to have had a say in Davids' appointment at the Kings, which came at a time when SA Rugby took the reins at the cash-strapped union.
In two Super Rugby seasons at the Kings, Davids guided the Port Elizabeth-based side to eight wins from 30 matches, but he did spark dramatic improvement in the 2017 season in which six of those wins came.
The franchise was then cut from the competition in line with SANZAAR's tournament restructuring.
Since joining the PRO14, the Kings have lost nine matches in a row, although Davids has had to start from scratch with a brand new team that was thrown together at the last minute.