The Southern Kings continued to bolster both their coaching staff and playing squad ahead of the start of the Guinness PRO14 Championship.
The Port Elizabeth-based side this week announced the inclusion of South Africa ‘A’ and Border Bulldogs assistant coach Chumani Booi to Deon Davids’ management team.
Booi takes over as backline coach with immediate effect following the departure of Vuyo Zangqa, who has taken up a coaching position in Germany, at the end of the 2017 Vodacom Super Rugby competition.
“We are pleased to be joined by Chumani Booi, who will be our new backline coach,” Southern Kings Chief Operations Officer, Charl Crous, announced on Monday.
“Booi’s appointment, who is joining us from the Border Bulldogs, further shows the quality of rugby personnel that the province of the Eastern Cape has. We look forward to his contribution. We are grateful to the Border Rugby Union for working with us in ensuring that Booi makes the transition to the Southern Kings despite their own preparations for the start of their Currie Cup First Division campaign.”
Head coach, Davids, welcomed the new management recruit.
“Chumani Booi is one of the respected coaches in the country, who comes with good experience from having coached the Border Bulldogs and the South Africa ‘A’ side. We looked to bring in somebody who will take Southern Kings rugby forward,” said Davids.
Former Springbok flyhalf and current SA Rugby’s acting high performance manager, Louis Koen, will also be assisting the Southern Kings as a consultant.
The Southern Kings’ playing squad has also been boosted with the signing and arrival of a number of players, who take the squad to a total of 40. These include Southern Kings’ stars during the Vodacom Super Rugby campaign – Andisa Ntsila, Luzuko Vulindlu and Alshaun Bock – as well as Guinness PRO14-experienced players Dries van Schalkwyk and Rossouw de Klerk. There are also additional players who are with the squad on a trial basis.
“We have put together a good squad that we are confident will be highly competitive in the Guinness PRO14 Championship,” Davids said.
“We are blessed with a squad that has a good mix of experience and exciting youth. We have players who have good Super Rugby experience under their belts as well as recruits who have played in the Guinness PRO14 who know what we can expect.
“This is a squad that excites me. We are now working hard at ensuring that we gel as a team and build a good team culture as soon as possible. We want to hit the ground running from the first game, which is just over a week away, and continue to grow as a squad as the Guinness PRO14 progresses.”
The Southern Kings will depart for Wales next week, where they will open their Guinness PRO14 campaign against the defending champions, the Scarlets, on 2 September 2017.
The Southern Kings squad is:
SOUTHERN KINGS 2017 GUINNESS PRO14 SQUAD
Alandre van Rooyen
Bobby de Wee
Dries van Schalkwyk
Jurie van Vuuren
Pieter-Steyn de Wet
Rossouw de Klerk
Rudi van Rooyen