Southern Kings

De Villiers to coach SEC Super 14 franchise





PORT ELIZABETH ‘ South Africa’s Under-21 World Cup winning coach, Peter de Villiers has been confirmed as coach of the Southern & Eastern Cape Rugby Super 14 franchise.

De Villiers’ appointment on a three-year contract was announced at a press conference here on Monday. The SEC Franchise will use 2006 as a development year and will participate in the Vodacom Super 14 tournament in 2007 and 2008.

Announcing the appointment, SEC interim Chairman Joey Daniels said De Villiers was the obvious candidate for the job, based on his coaching achievements and experience at National, Provincial and Club level over the past decade.

‘Peter has had many notable achievements during his coaching career, most recently with the SA Under-21 team which came third at the IRB Under-21 World Cup in 2004 and won the title in 2005. He also has an excellent theoretical background as a coach after having completed numerous courses locally and internationally. We are confident that Peter’s knowledge of the game, his relationships with players and his understanding of the challenges facing the SEC Franchise will assist us in meeting our objectives,’ Daniels said.

Reacting to his appointment, De Villiers said he was thrilled to have been chosen to coach the SEC Super 14 team and looked forward to the challenge

‘Coaching at Super 14 level is a step up for me and I see this as a major challenge. It is the toughest tournament of its kind in the world and there is obviously pressure to perform. I see this as a major challenge for me as a coach and I believe that if we do things right we will achieve success on all fronts.

‘It is fantastic to have a development year in 2006 that will allow us time to prepare a squad and play some matches in advance of our participation in 2007. This will also allow us to properly assess our strengths and weaknesses and address any shortfalls well in advance of the Super 14 in 2007’.

De Villiers said that one of his first tasks in the job would be to begin looking at the players within the SEC Franchise region, as well as others that may be available, and to plot the way forward with regard to putting a squad together

‘There is a wealth of talent in this region and the SEC franchise will create opportunities for these players to gain valuable experience of Super 14 rugby and prepare them for higher representation. Players within the three SEC Provinces will now have an incentive to stay in this region which will benefit rugby as a whole.

‘There is much scope for the development and growth of the game at all levels across this region and I will be looking for ways to tap into this as well as to determine how the franchise can assist in enhancing existing rugby structures in the region,’ de Villiers said.

The SEC Franchise will most probably play matches against the five South African Super 14 teams early in the new year. There is also the possibility of fixtures against other international teams. Details in this regard still need to be confirmed.

Daniels added that matters relevant to this, as well as the contracting of a squad, appointment of support staff, the appointment of a Managing Director and other essential items would be given priority attention in the coming weeks.

‘Now that we have appointed the coach we can plan the way forward to ensure that we have everything ready and in place well in advance of the start of the 2006 season. There will be a lot of emphasis too on the development of the brand and the official launch of the franchise later this year,’ Daniels said.

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