Cape Town - The Southern Kings have never enjoyed Super Rugby security and that, combined with their financial instability, has made for challenging times.
The hope now is that their inclusion into the first ever PRO14 tournament will be the dawn of a new and more fruitful era.
Both the Kings and the Cheetahs were confirmed as new additions to the PRO12 on Tuesday, and they will both join the competition from the 2017/18 season.
Fixtures get underway in September, which doesn't leave the South African franchises with much time to ready themselves.
READ: KINGS WILL STRUGGLE TO BE READY FOR PRO12
But despite the challenges, the Kings are just happy to be on solid ground again.
"We have been through tough times on and off the
field over recent years but we now have the chance to reclaim our status as one
of the powerhouses of South African rugby," said EP Rugby president Andre Rademan.
"The Southern Kings have been on an upward
playing curve this season and there is much to be excited about.
represents the heartlands of black rugby in South Africa – a tradition
stretching back to the very establishment of the game in this country – and we
will bring a unique passion and flavour to the tournament."