Lionel Cronje (Left) and Deon Davids (Right) taking questions in the post match press conference after the Kings’ record 44-3 victory over the Rebels. Photo: Stephen Kisbey-Green, originally seen in Grocott’s Mail
I am back after nearly eight months of zero activity. There are many reasons for my disappearance from this platform, including a disappointment in the Springbok results, and an increased workload at the end of the year. However, I am determined to make use of this platform to express my views on the current state of South African, and even international rugby. Now on to the topic of my first rant back from the grave, Super Rugby…
The Kings vs everyone else:
I have recently written an opinion piece which is expected to be published in Grocott’s Mail later in the week, however I will summarise the essence of that article in these four words. THE KINGS MUST STAY!
The Southern Kings have proven this year that they are becoming more competitive with each passing narrow defeat and with their most recent drubbing of the Melbourne Rebels, they have shown that they can and will be successful given enough time to develop the players they currently have. Coach Deon Davids has done well in selecting a side of mixed talents and experience, coupling the journeyman Lionel Cronje, with young blood in the form of Makazole Mapimpi for example. The Kings have also only recently begun to show that they can win and win big. I refer of course to the record breaking 44-3 victory a week ago.
The Kings also boast one of the most successful teams in terms of transformation in the country, and have had great success in developing the skills of non-white players from domestic club rugby to professional rugby. Players such as Lukhanyo Am and Andisa Ntsila have risen to great heights in Super Rugby, both of which have been deveopled by Davids at the Kings.
However, ultimately the decision to axe the franchises boils down to who NOT to axe, and in my opinion the Bulls and Cheetahs should not fall under that category. Not only do the Kings have more log points than both the Bulls and the Cheetahs, but they also have put together more complete performances, and have proven that they can win away from South African soil.The Bulls have seldom seen like they are in control of any game this season, and the Cheetahs seem to give up any control that they have earned with enough time for their opposition to convert enough points to take the lead.
I believe that South African rugby will do well to axe the two most underperforming sides, as the players that are worth their salt in said unions would seamlessly fit into the other unions and, as a result, increase their depth and make them more competitive.
That is all from my first rant back at blogging and I hope to use this platform more often in the future.