Kings mess deepens

After unanimously agreeing to their inclusion early this year it is reported the presidents council will re-vote on whether the Kings should play Super Rugby in 2013.

In January it was announced that the Kings would participate in the tournament, but now Die Burger reports Saru CEO Jurie Roux has scheduled a meeting for 16 August, with the Eastern Cape franchise once again the main topic of discussion.

The paper indicates the presidents will apparently be given the following options to choose from:

- The Kings gain Super Rugby promotion at the expense of the Lions;

- The Kings gain promotion, but in a collaborative effort the Lions’ top players then play Super Rugby for them;

- The Lions and Cheetahs merge to again become a franchise (they played together as the Cats from 1998-2005);

- Rugby bosses scrap the Kings’ inclusion altogether.

On Sunday it was reported the Kings had accepted a R40 million pay-off to stand down from Super Rugby until 2016. They have denied this, stressing their determination to be involved next year. Upon making the decision in January there was no plan around how a sixth South African franchise would be included.

Saru’s attempts to bully Sanzar into changing the tournament format failed forcing the governing body to reassess their course of action. This latest desperate attempt to reach a solution simply serves to further tarnish the country’s reputation in rugby circles.

Roux responded to the report through a media release, saying: ‘Reports of proposed alternatives to be considered at the meeting were purely speculative. But the decision rests with the general council and until they have made that decision it serves no purpose to become involved in speculation on any scenarios.’

The release added: ‘Each of the 14 provincial unions has two voting seats on the council (one of whom must be the union president or his deputy). The Saru president, Oregan Hoskins, also has a vote, making 29 votes in all.