Date For Unveiling Of PRO12 Expansion Plans Revealed
An official announcement on the Cheetahs and Southern Kings inclusion in an expanded “Pro14” is expected to be made on or close to the 15th of July.
The South African franchises are among the three teams set to be dropped from Super Rugby, with the PRO12 their likely next destination. Officials from the northern hemisphere competition have been actively looking to expand in recent months.
Last week the Cheetahs and the Southern Kings waved their rights from further competing in the Super Rugby after reaching an agreement with the South Africa Rugby Union.
No official announcement has been made yet, however, according to the CEO of the Free State Rugby Union, Harold Verster, all could be confirmed as soon as Saturday, and this will be done by the competition itself.
“It’s actually a big change in our life and our business, but we have opted to accept a settlement with SA Rugby, rather than fight the issue in court because we have a contract to play Super Rugby until 2020.” Verster said.
“We have negotiated an amicable solution and there is a wonderful opportunity for us up north, for the Cheetahs and Kings.
“It will be easier to travel and so on, so we’re excited about the new venture.
Verster added that at this stage they cannot elaborate too much, seeing that the tournament organisers want to make the announcement themselves.
“Unfortunately they have opted to make the release themselves once everything is in place.
“That will be around about the 15th of July, once their board is in place. It’s a company and SA Rugby will be joining and be a part of the company as shareholders.
“Once those things have settled they will make the big announcement as to exactly where, when and how it will work.
“It will be up north and it is very exciting for us.
“It will slot us out of Super Rugby, but I think that it will be very beneficial for us.