Kings set to lose tug-of-war over scrumhalf
Cape Town - It’s looking all the more likely that the Southern Kings will have to make do without scrumhalf James Hall in this year’s Super Rugby competition.
The 21-year-old former Junior Springbok left the Kings after last year’s Super Rugby competition to play for French club Oyonnax.
Hall has excelled at Oyonnax, with the Pro D2 club not keen to release him.
Sport24 reported earlier in the year that the Kings were left in the dark as to whether Hall would return to Port Elizabeth.
Now, it seems the Kings have lost the tug-of-war with the French club.
“At this point in time, it does not seem that James is coming back,” Kings coach Deon Davids told the HeraldLIVE website.
“So we are looking to recruit a more senior player into his position and hopefully we will have more news within the next few weeks. We have got some players in mind, but I do not want to speculate on that now.”
At the time of Hall's departure, the understanding was for him to return in time for this year’s Super Rugby competition, with Kings CEO Charl Crous saying at the time: "We have not released him from his contract. James was only contracted for Super Rugby and he has been given the opportunity to gain some exposure abroad during what will be our Currie Cup season.”
Currently, there are only three scrumhalves contracted to the Kings for Super Rugby, namely Ricky Schroeder, Johan Steyn and Poerie van Rooyen.
The Kings will play warm-up matches against the Border Bulldogs in East London on February 4 and SWD in Port Elizabeth on February 11, before opening their Super Rugby campaign at home against the Jaguares on February 25.