EDITORIAL | Win over Cheetahs could raise morale


There will be time for honest reflection in the Isuzu Southern Kings camp as they prepare for their final Guinness PRO14 match against the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein on Saturday. After a long and drawn-out campaign, many players could be pulling on a Kings jersey for the final time.More than 20 of the current squad will be cut within the next couple of weeks as the Kings prepare for a new intake of players. New faces have started to appear on the horizon, with the Kings announcing on Wednesday they had signed Irish lock Jerry Sexton to boost their pack.Since their hurried PRO14 debut two years ago, the Kings have played 41 matches in the European competition. Worryingly, they have won only three of those matches and have yet to win a match on the road.It would seem that coach Deon Davids will keep his job for at least one more season, even though the patience of supporters is starting to wear thin.It still remains to be seen how much money the Kings’ new owners will throw at the team in a bid to get the struggling franchise back on its feet.Efforts to bring former star Demetri Catrakilis back to Port Elizabeth gives an indication of the ambition of Kings chairman Loyiso Dotwana and his business consortium.Getting Catrakilis back in a Kings jersey will cost at least R3.5m, so there is clearly a sizeable budget for recruitment.Former Bok wing Jamba Ulengo was in Port Elizabeth last week, with a view to landing a contract, but his hopes ended after he failed a medical.Ulengo has been hampered by knee problems in the past, though it was not revealed by Kings officials why he had failed to make the cut.No doubt there will be many comings and goings at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium as the Kings scour the market place for fresh talent.In the meantime, the Kings must focus on the job at hand when they face the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein.A win over the Free Staters would wipe away some of the pain of what has been a difficult season for players and supporters alike.

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