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    Super Rugby preview: Kings

    2017-02-20 15:08

    Cape Town - The Kings have retained the services of coach Deon Davids and are looking for an improved display in 2017. 

    They finished with just two wins from their 15 matches in regular season last year, though that was enough to see them edge the Sunwolves in the South African Group. 

    That the Kings were even able to put a team out in 2016 was impressive given the financial and administrative issues that had plagued Eastern Province rugby, but they got through the worst of it and will be hoping for a better return in 2016. 

    They avoid all of the New Zealand sides in 2017 which is a major boost. 

    Now, instead of trips to places like Christchurch and Wellington, the Kings can look forward to hosting three Australian sides at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium. 

    The Kings have lost a lot of players this season, but they at least have some continuity in the form of their coach. 

    KEY PLAYER

    There are a number of players in the Kings engine room that stand out, but flank Chris Cloete's work rate and intensity make him stand out. he battled injury towards the end of last year's tournament and has reportedly concussed himself ahead of this year's competition. Davids will be hoping that the latest setback is not a serious one, because in Cloete the Kings have a player who can make a difference. He is strong defensively, his work on the ground makes things difficult for the opposition and he is also a solid ball carrier. 

    MAJOR SIGNING

    Undoubtedly Ross Geldenhuys. We aren't quite sure how the Kings pulled this one off, but fair play to them. Geldenhuys (33) joins from the Highlanders where he was a Super Rugby winner in 2015. He may getting on in years, but Geldenhuys has achieved what nobody else in this Kings squad has. The fact that he knows what it takes to succeed at the the top level makes his him an incredibly valuable player for the Kings.

    MAJOR LOSS

    Where do we start? The Kings are practically a new team in 2017. They have lost a host of players to France and numerous others to South African unions. But, for us, hooker Edgar Marutlulle is the biggest loss. The 29-year-old joins the Bulls this year after being one of the standout performers for the Kings in last year's competition. 

    FIXTURES

    February 25: Jaguares (a)
    March 4: Sunwolves (a)
    March 11: Stormers (h)
    March 18: Sharks (a)
    March 25: Lions (h)
    April 1: BYE
    April 9: Force (a)
    April 15: Reds (a)
    April 21: Waratahs (a)
    April 29: Rebels (h)
    May 6: Bye
    May 13: Sharks (h)
    May 20: Brumbies (h)
    May 28: Lions (a)
    INTERNATIONAL BREAK
    July 1: Jaguares (a)
    July 8: Bulls (a)
    July 14: Cheetahs (h)

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    Fixtures

    Saturday, 17 February 2018
    • Stormers v Jaguares, Cape Town 15:05
    • Lions v Sharks, Emirates Airlines Park 17:15
    Friday, 23 February 2018
    • Highlanders v Blues, Forsyth Barr Stadium 08:35
    • Rebels v Reds, AAMI Park 10:45
    Saturday, 24 February 2018
    • Sunwolves v Brumbies, Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium 06:15
    • Crusaders v Chiefs, AMI Stadium 08:35
    • Waratahs v Stormers, Allianz Stadium 10:45
    • Lions v Jaguares, Emirates Airlines Park 15:05
    • Bulls v Hurricanes, Loftus Versfeld 17:15

    Results

    05 August 2017
    29 July 2017
    22 July 2017
    21 July 2017
    15 July 2017
    14 July 2017
    08 July 2017
    07 July 2017
    01 July 2017
    30 June 2017
    09 June 2017
    03 June 2017
    02 June 2017
    28 May 2017
    27 May 2017
    26 May 2017
    21 May 2017
    20 May 2017
    19 May 2017
    13 May 2017
    12 May 2017
    06 May 2017
    05 May 2017
    30 April 2017
    29 April 2017
    28 April 2017
    22 April 2017
    21 April 2017
    15 April 2017
    14 April 2017
    09 April 2017
    08 April 2017
    07 April 2017
    02 April 2017
    01 April 2017
    31 March 2017
    25 March 2017
    24 March 2017
    18 March 2017
    17 March 2017
    11 March 2017
    10 March 2017
    04 March 2017
    03 March 2017
    02 March 2017
    25 February 2017
    24 February 2017
    23 February 2017
    06 August 2016
    30 July 2016
    23 July 2016
    22 July 2016
    16 July 2016
    15 July 2016
    09 July 2016
    08 July 2016
    02 July 2016
    01 July 2016
    29 May 2016
    28 May 2016
    27 May 2016
    21 May 2016
    20 May 2016
    14 May 2016
    13 May 2016
    07 May 2016
    06 May 2016
    30 April 2016
    29 April 2016
    24 April 2016
    23 April 2016
    22 April 2016
    16 April 2016
    15 April 2016
    09 April 2016
    08 April 2016
    03 April 2016
    02 April 2016
    01 April 2016
    27 March 2016
    26 March 2016
    25 March 2016
    19 March 2016
    18 March 2016
    12 March 2016
    11 March 2016
    05 March 2016
    04 March 2016
    27 February 2016
    26 February 2016

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