All the speculation regarding the EP Kings’ participation in the Southern Hemisphere’s Rugby biggest rugby competition were finally put to rest on Thursday afternoon in Cape Town when it was officially announced that the Kings would participate in the 2013 Super Rugby competition.
After years of knocking on the door and waiting for inclusion into Super Rugby this news will no doubt be appluaded by hoards of Eastern Cape rugby-lovers who will at last have a local team to support in the internationally-renowned showpiece.
As a show of support the EP Kings management have requested that supporters alike come out to the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium tomorrow (Friday 17 August, 2012) to celebrate this news in a jam-packed derby day against Boland.
The EP U19?s will kick-off the rugby frenzy when they kick-off the derby proceedings at 2:45pm, followed by the u21?s at 4:30pm. The final match of the day will see the EP Kings take on the defending champions Boland at 7:00pm!
The Eastern Province Kings will be looking to do the ‘double’ over reigning Absa Currie Cup First Division champions the Regent Boland Kavaliers in Port Elizabeth on Friday night when they meet in what could be a season-defining second-round match for both sides.
The unbeaten Kings edged the Kavaliers 25-20 in the first match of the season in Wellington, and are currently the overwhelming favourites for the title.
A bonus-point victory for the Kings at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium will give coach Alan Solomons’ team a commanding lead at the top of the standings, especially as their two main rivals, the Leopards and Ford Pumas, who are six and seven points adrift respectively as the expanded eight-team competition enters its second round this weekend, play each other at the same time.
The Kavaliers have had a nightmare season so far, losing their opening four matches before drawing against the SWD Eagles and showing signs of recovering in posting big victories over the lowly Valke and Border Bulldogs. But the men from Wellington still remain in sixth place on the log, a full 15 points behind the Kings and six points behind the fifth-placed Griffons.
EP Kings vs Boland:
- Date: Friday, 17 August
- Kickoff: 19:00
- Venue: Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth
- Referee: Jaco Peyper
- Assistants: Quinton Immelman, Fumanekile Yamile
- Last meeting: 29 June in Wellington (First round): Kings won 25-20