Super Rugby
Major step forward for Southern Kings
ESPNscrum Staff
July 29, 2011
President of  the South African Rugby Union, Oregan Hoskins, South African and British and Irish Lions Banquet, Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa, July 4, 2009
SARU president Regan Hoskins has welcomed the announcement of the new Cooperation Agreement © Getty Images

Border Rugby Union, Eastern Province Rugby and Southern Western Districts Rugby Union have signed a Cooperation Agreement which will regulate the relationship, rights and obligations of the three Southern Kings franchise partners ahead of its entry into the Super Rugby competition in 2013.

The new accord guarantees that players from all three provinces will be included in the Southern Kings squad "at all times". In addition, while the new franchise will be based in Port Elizabeth, with its home games to be staged at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, pre-season friendlies and other non-fixture matches involving the Kings will be played in East London and George "whenever possible".

South African Rugby Union (SARU) president Regan Hoskins welcomed the publication of the agreement and believes that it represents another significant step forward for rugby in the Eastern Cape region.

"This now paves the way for even greater cooperation between the three unions, which in turn will benefit the growth and development of rugby in these areas," he said. "I want to thank the presidents of the three provincial unions as well as the SARU task team which facilitated this important process."

Meanwhile, Hoskins was this week further buoyed by the comments of Minister of Sport and Recreation Fikile Mbalula, who called on all South Africans to unite in support of the Springboks in this year's World Cup and the country's athletes in the All Africa Games.

"SARU values this support and encouragement by the Minister of Sport, the IMC and SASCOC for our national rugby team and want to all South Africans to show their passion and support for these two SA teams by proudly wearing the Green and Gold colours," he said.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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