Davids: Southern Kings need to Prepare Mentally


Coach Deon Davids had emphasised that mental preparation is key to the Southern Kings’ players in the build-up to the Super Rugby next month.

This comes at the back-drop of unsettling financial obligations between players that have been reaping through the camp the last few months. Contracted players had to deal with salary cuts, while others were forced to bridge through months without getting much financial compensation.

“This was out of mine and the current coaching team’s control. We know that there are players and their respective supporters who are upset because of this and rightfully so,” said Davids.

Through this, mental preparation remains a vital component for performance value as the Super Rugby tournament commences.

“Along with the physical we have worked a lot on getting everyone mentally prepared as well, which I believe is very important,” added Davids.

Ideal delegation comes with selecting the best players, with the best combinations for the respective positions; to form an overall solidified unit. In order to build on that, an ethos – one to string together all the gaps, needs to be incorporated into the camp.

“Our primary focus has been on getting the best players available to form our squad and then to work on the team culture and setting in place our mission, vision and core values that we as a team want to aspire towards,” said Davids.

“We are however, doing all that we can with the resources we have, to prepare adequately and ensure that we do the people of the Eastern Cape proud.”

Mental preparation coincides with physical adaptation and playing the right brand of rugby. The players are already an ever-steady physical unit. They are professional rugby players who know what it is like to physically attribute themselves as a force. Fitness and strength aside, it is psychological contingencies that will determine their self-belief and confidence, along with playing the right game-plan.

“I've been around rugby circles long enough as a coach to know that at any level the basics are the same. Great teams are great because they do the basics right and this is also part of our coaching focus,” said Davids.

Davids also sees a silver lining with the fact that he is an inexperienced coach, with a relatively inexperienced squad, heading into the Super Rugby.

“I don't see this as a disadvantage but as a positive. Other coaches may not know what to expect from me and the game plan that we may adopt. The coaching staff and I bring a fresh perspective to Super Rugby 2016, and one that we are hoping will be effective,” he said.

“We are focusing on what lies ahead and what we can do, rather than what we can't do,” concluded Davids.

The Southern Kings kick-off their Super Rugby campaign on Saturday, 27th February at the NMB Stadium in Port Elizabeth.