• Kings still wait for wages

    The Kings’ players and staff continue to await payments for November as the union’s cash-flow problems persist unabated, writes CRAIG LEWIS.

    Payday arrived on Tuesday with salaries unpaid. Players have now not been paid for October and November, while it’s an ongoing problem that has affected coaches, administration staff and management for months on end.

    Although Kings CEO Charl Crous told SARugbymag.co.za on Monday that he remained positive that salaries would be paid for November 'imminently', there is no certainty over when the funds will become available.

    The Kings appear to be stuck in somewhat of a limbo phase, with Saru having taking control of the Vodacom Super Rugby franchise, but the Eastern Province Rugby Union remaining responsible for current and outstanding salary payments.

    When Kings president Cheeky Watson addressed the media in November, he said he still remained confident that funds from a long-touted sponsorship would materialise, but there has been no further clarity on this subject.

    Saru said its Super Rugby planning for the Kings is nearing completion, and last Wednesday stated it would reveal all the details to the rugby public this week.

    Some of the key questions revolve around when they might be taking over the payment of salaries, and what sort of squad they will be able to assemble for Super Rugby. As many as six players have already left the Kings due to the recurring payment problems.

    The South African Rugby Players’ Association remains in contact with the players and various roleplayers, while it is also continuing to provide various means of support and assistance to players in need, which include the provision of food vouchers. As they did when October salaries weren’t paid, Sarpa may now once again issue a 10-day notice for the Kings to pay outstanding salaries or face further action.

    Photo: Michael Sheehan/Gallo Images

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    Craig Lewis